Australians leading extraordinary lives have been celebrated with the annual Queen’s Birthday Honours list.
The substantial list of Australians making a positive impact on the world includes athletes, an army captain, entertainers and artists, travel writers, a farmer and an animal rights activist.
Governor of New South Wales, Marie Bashir will also receive the title of dame — which will be awarded to her by Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott.
Being honoured with the title of companions of the Order of Australia is Professor Richard Gibbs and editor Les Carlyon.
Professor Gibbs is receiving recognition for the work on the human genome and the contribution by author Les Carlyon, former editor of The Age, is also being marked by his appointment.
The only woman to grace the list of seven AC appointees is Dr Megan Clark, chief executive of CSIRO.
Better known honours recipients include the four members of Australian folk music group The Seekers – Judith Durham, Athol Guy, Bruce Woodley and Keith Potger – who were made officers of the Order of Australia (AO). They were in good company, joined by the founders of the travellers’ bible Lonely Planet, Maureen and Tony Wheeler.
The list also includes opera singer Lyndon Terracini, singer and composer Deborah Cheetham (pictured), jazz musician Paul Grabowsky, marathon runner Steve Moneghetti and Nine Network presenter, Richard Wilkins.
HIV and gay rights activist Lex Watson made the list posthumously after he died of cancer in May at the age of 71.
A Star of Gallantry was awarded to two unnamed soldiers and Private B, who repeatedly braved heavy enemy fire while supporting his unit in Oruzgan, Afghanistan.
Of the 847 nominations received by the Governor-General’s office, 571 were approved and 212 merit and military awards were also bestowed on deserving Australians
“To these recipients, I offer my warmest congratulations and express my sincere admiration for your achievements,” Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove said.
“You now join the company of men and women whose actions have enriched our community and whose values we hold dear – compassion, dedication, generosity, tolerance, energetic ambition.”
IMAGE: Deborah Cheetham, Aboriginal Australian soprano, actor, composer and playwright, photographed on Sunday ahead of being announced as a recipient of the 2014 Queen’s Birthday Honours. (AAP Image/Joe Castro)