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UC celebrates Queen’s Birthday Honours

Kim Pham

14 June 2017: University of Canberra Adjunct Associate Professor Dianne Firth and alumnus, the late Graeme Barrow, were among a number of University of Canberra staff, students and alumni recognised in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours.

Dr Firth, a landscape architecture academic and artist, was awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) for her distinguished services to landscape architecture and education.

“I was surprised at first, then deeply honoured. I have more than 40 years of teaching and landscape practice with a range of institutions and agencies, but I never expected recognition for it,” she said.

Dr Firth is an expert in the history, theory and practice of landscape architecture and heritage of Canberra. She has been sitting on the ACT Heritage Council for more than 10 years, Design Review Panel for over five years and is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects. This year she was appointed Deputy Chair of the Historic Places for the ACT Government.

She also has a love of art and is an accomplished quilter with many of her works displayed in public and private collections around the world. She was the inaugural convenor of the University of Canberra Faculty of Arts and Design Staff Art Exhibition in 1992. This event is still held to this day with the 23rd exhibition displayed in May 2017.

The late Graeme Barrow was also awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) in recognition of his service to local history, and the Canberra community.

Mr Barrow graduated from the University of Canberra with a Bachelor of Arts in Professional Writing in 1979 and went on to write several history books on the Canberra and Lake George region. He also wrote and self-published more than 30 bushwalking guides to Canberra and the south coast of New South Wales.

Honorary Degree holder Dr Jamal Rifi was also made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for his significant service to the Lebanese community, as an advocate for multi-faith relations, and to medicine. Former Pro Vice-Chancellor Professor Mohamed Khadra was made an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for distinguished service to medicine in the field of urology as a surgeon, clinician and mentor, to rural and remote medical education, and to literature as an author and playwright.

A total of 13 current or former University of Canberra staff, students, alumni or honorary degree holders received Queen’s Birthday honours. You can view the full list here.