Two Foundation Residents recognised with Honorary Fellowship

The outstanding contributions of two Foundation Residents, Mr Robin Brown and Dr Peter Garrett AM were formally recognised on Thursday 3 November in a joint Honorary Fellowship Conferral Ceremony at Burgmann College.

The ceremony commenced with a Welcome to Country by Ngambri Elder Dr Aunty Matilda House. Council Chairman Greg Mills then made the conferrals to an appreciative audience of alumni, residents and friends.

Mr Robin Brown - Citation Excerpt

Robin Brown was an active contributor to Burgmann in its first year, including as the inaugural Secretary of the Burgmann Residents’ Association. Robin has given a great deal of time to the College over the last two decades, as a member of the Council, the Board and as Secretary. Robin was also instrumental in establishing the Burgmann College Alumni Association and was its inaugural President.

Robin has also given extensive service to the Australian community and developing countries in both paid and voluntary roles, especially in the field of consumer policy. Robin’s single most significant contribution was his involvement in the fight against the tobacco industry.

“I don’t think anyone in the world is luckier than I and much of that flows from being part of the Burgmann community.  An Aladdin’s lamp genie wouldn’t have much work to do for me.  But I’d get it working pretty hard for people who haven’t had my luck.”  - Robin Brown, Honorary Fellow

Dr Peter Garrett AM - Citation Excerpt

Peter Garrett was an inaugural 1971 resident who threw his considerable talents into the developing spirit of the new College. From sporting teams to bar night singalongs, from enthusiastic political debates to late night philosophical discussions in the conversation area, Peter was always an encourager to others, an investor in friendships with that combination of great fun and serious commitment to the world at large which became typical of Burgmann residents. Peter Garrett is of course also a long-time advocate and campaigner on a range of local and global issues. A member of Midnight Oil, one of Australia’s most successful bands who have just completed their final world tour, he served as a cabinet minister in the Rudd/Gillard Labor governments from 2007 to 2013.

As an eighteen-year-old he declared he would “make a record” and be part of the political life of Australia. Burgmann is blessed by having the continued support of this inspirational person.  

“The world is changed by people that turn up. That's pretty much how it works; and if this college can impart in the students that are here that sense that if you do turn up, not for yourself, but to make that difference on something that you feel really strongly about and passionately about, then - despite the fact that its sounding like a cliché - the world does become a better place.” 
Dr Peter Garrett AM, Honorary Fellow

Principal Sally Renouf presented specially commissioned gifts for our two recipients.

Mr Brown received a calligraphic representation of his poem “The Place That Became The Place to Become” which he wrote for the College’s 50th Anniversary. Read poem

Dr Garrett was presented with a set of music sticks and a walka board made by artists Billy and Lulu Cooley from Maruku Arts, Mutitjulu NT. Billy and Lulu remembered Midnight Oil performing their song Dead Heart at the handing back of the rock (Uluru) event in October 1985 and were honoured to make these gifts for Mr Garrett.

1. Dr Aunty Matilda House
2. Chairman Mr Greg Mills & Mr Robin Brown
3. Chairman Mr Greg Mills & Dr Peter Garrett AM
4. Principal Sally Renouf, Honorary Fellow Judy Middlebrook, Honorary Fellow Dr Peter Garrett AM, Mr Greg Mills, Honorary Fellow Mr Robin Brown, Honorary Fellow Mr Len Goodman AO.

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