Our Patrons

His Excellency General the Honourable David Hurley AC DSC (Retd)

Patron-in-Chief

His Excellency General the Honourable David John Hurley AC DSC (Retd) was sworn in as the Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia on 1 July 2019.

David Hurley joined the Australian Army in January 1972, graduating from the Royal Military College, Duntroon into the Royal Australian Infantry Corps. In a long and distinguished 42-year military career, his service culminated with his appointment as Chief of the Defence Force.

He commanded the 1st Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment during Operation SOLACE in Somalia in 1993, receiving the Distinguished Service Cross. Following promotion to Colonel, he was appointed Chief of Staff, Headquarters 1st Division in June 1994, attending the U.S. Army War College in 1996 and 1997.

He commanded the 1st Brigade from 1999-2000 in Darwin, supporting Australian-led operations in East Timor. He was appointed the inaugural Chief of Capability Development Group from 2003-07, Chief of Joint Operations Command in October 2007, and Vice Chief of the Defence Force in July 2008. Promoted to General, he succeeded Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston as Chief of the Defence Force on 4 July 2011 until his retirement on 30 June 2014. In 2010, he was appointed a Companion of the Order of Australia for eminent service to the Australian Defence Force.

Prior to being sworn in as Governor-General, David Hurley served as the 38th Governor of New South Wales from October 2014 – May 2019.

David Hurley was born in Wollongong, New South Wales on 26 August 1953, the son of Norma and James Hurley. His father was an Illawarra steelworker and his mother worked in a grocery store. He grew up in Port Kembla and attended Port Kembla High School where he completed his Higher School Certificate in 1971. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts and Graduate Diploma in Defence Studies from the Royal Military College, Duntroon in 1975. He is married to Linda with whom he has three children: Caitlin, Marcus and Amelia.

He was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Letters from the University of Wollongong in 2013; a Doctor of the University, honoris causa, from the University of New South Wales in 2015; made a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering in 2016; and awarded an Honorary Doctorate from Macquarie University in 2017.

General the Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove AK AC (Mil) CVO MC (Retd)

Patron Emeritus

Born into an Army family, Peter Cosgrove attended Waverley College in Sydney before graduating from the Royal Military College Duntroon in 1968.

His first deployment was in Malaysia with the 1st Battalion RAR and later in Vietnam he commanded an infantry platoon. He served as Commander of INTERFET in East Timor in 1999 overseeing that country’s transition to independence. Then promoted to Chief of Army and later Chief of the Australian Defence Force.

He retired from the ADF in 2005 serving on several boards before becoming a Knight in the Order of Australia when sworn in as Governor-General in 2014 and serving until June 2019.

Sir Peter was appointed a Commander of the Royal Victorian Order by Her Majesty the Queen in August 2019. In retirement, he remains involved with defence, health and other charitable organisations.

Sir Peter is also an avid sports fan with a particular interest in Rugby and Cricket.  Married to Lynne since 1976, they have three sons and delight in their two young grandchildren, and eagerly await a third.

Mr Tim Fairfax AC

Patron

Mr Tim Fairfax AC is a Company Director, Pastoralist and Philanthropist.

Tim is Chairman of the Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal and the Tim Fairfax Family Foundation, Director of the Vincent Fairfax Family Foundation, Cambooya Pty Ltd, Australian Philanthropic Services and Principal of Rawbelle Management Pty Ltd.

He is President of the Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art Foundation, Director of the RNA Foundation, a member of the National Portrait Gallery Foundation, National Gallery of Australia Foundation and Australian Schools Plus.

Tim is Patron of the AMAQ Foundation, the University of the Sunshine Coast Foundation, the Flying Arts Alliance Incorporated and the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation.

Tim takes an active leadership role in promoting philanthropy in Australia. He is passionate about supporting rural, remote and regional communities, particularly students from low socioeconomic backgrounds.

Tim has a range of business interests. He is the Principal of TVF Pastoral Company and JH Fairfax & Son. He operates nine rural properties in Queensland and New South Wales involving beef cattle, fine wool and grain.

Professor Colleen Hayward AM

Patron

Professor Colleen Hayward AM is a senior Noongar woman with extensive family links throughout the south-west of WA. Since 2009, Colleen has been the Head of Kurongkurl Katitjin; Edith Cowan University’s Centre for Indigenous Education and Research and concurrently holds the position of Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Equity and Indigenous) across the University.

For more than 30 years, Colleen has provided significant input to policies and programs on a wide range of issues, reflecting the needs of minority groups at community, state and national levels. She has an extensive background in a range of areas including health, education, leadership and governance.

In much of this work, she draws on her qualifications which include a Diploma of Teaching, a Bachelor of Education, a Bachelor of Applied Science in Aboriginal Community Management and Development and a Post Graduate Certificate in Cross Sector Partnerships from Cambridge University.

Among her many achievements, Colleen has been inducted into the Western Australian Women’s Hall of Fame, recognised as a Member in the General Division of the Order of Australia, has been made a Western Australian Ambassador for Children and Young People; as well as being named as one of WA’s 100 most influential West Australians in both 2015 and 2016.

The Hon Andrew Robb AO

Patron

Until his recent retirement from politics, Andrew Robb was Australia’s Minister for Trade and Investment. In this role Mr Robb negotiated Free Trade Agreements with South Korea, Japan and China, as well as the 12 country Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) free trade agreement and the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership with Singapore.

Additionally he conducted 85 investment roundtables with 28 countries. Mr Robb is currently a Board Member of the Kidman cattle enterprise, Chair of Asialink, Asialink Business and CNSDose, and strategic advisor to Beef Innovations Australia, as well as a range of national and international businesses.

Mr Robb’s agricultural experience began as an animal health officer, with major involvement in the successful brucellosis and TB evaluation program in Australia’s beef herd. Subsequently, as an agricultural economist, Mr Robb worked on public policy issues across a wide range of agricultural industries.

Mr Robb then was appointed the Executive Director (CEO) of the Cattle Council of Australia, before his appointment as Executive Director (CEO) of Australia’s peak farmer organisation, the National Farmers’ Federation. Since that time, Mr Robb was General Secretary of the Liberal Party of Australia, including his role as campaign director of the 1996 federal election which brought former Prime Minister, Hon John Howard, into government with the biggest Liberal Party win in history.

Shortly after the 1996 federal election Mr Robb moved back into the private sector and for two years was a member of the investment team for the Gorgon Gas Project, a Board Member of Sinclair Knight Mertz – Australia’s largest consulting engineering company as well as CEO at Acxiom – an Australia-wide direct marketing technology company.

Mr Robb also provided strategic advice to Australia’s 39 university Vice Chancellors. Mr Robb stood for Parliament in 2004 and was elected to the Federal Seat of Goldstein until his move back into the private sector at the time of the recent 2016 election.

In 2003, Mr Robb was awarded the office of the Order of Australia (AO) for his service to agriculture, politics and the community. As well, Mr Robb is the author of “Black Dog Daze: Public Life, Private Demons” (Melbourne University Publishing).