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Australian of the Year Awards

You know what makes an Australian of the Year.
Just look around you.
See people who show courage, sacrifice and kindness.
They may not know you. But you know them.
Now it's time to show them.


Each year our nation celebrates the achievement and contribution of eminent Australians through the Australian of the Year Awards by profiling leading citizens who are role models for us all. They inspire us through their achievements and challenge us to make our own contribution to creating a better Australia. The Australian of the Year Awards provides all Australians with the opportunity to recognise someone who makes them proud.


2021 SA State Recipient Australian of the Year 
Tanya Hosch - Leader, Changemaker and Visionary

Tanya Hosch is the first Indigenous person and second woman appointed to the AFL executive. She has held leadership roles in sport, the arts, culture, social justice and public policy. One of the pre-eminent Indigenous leaders pursuing constitutional recognition of Australia’s First Nations people, Tanya’s principled leadership is transforming the AFL – advancing women, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, gender-diverse Australians and the entire community. Tanya championed the first Indigenous player statue of Nicky Winmar and instigated a review of anti-vilification policy within the code. She helped secure an apology for Adam Goodes from the AFL and delivered a new industry framework to help prevent racist treatment of players. Tanya also helped found advocacy organisation The Indigenous Players Alliance. She drove a new respect and responsibility policy enabling women to seek redress for unacceptable behaviour, and a world-first gender diversity policy for a contact sport. In 2020, she drove a hugely successful social media campaign aimed at informing and protecting Indigenous communities from COVID-19.


2021 SA State Recipient Senior Australian of the Year 
Professor Richard Bruggemann - Disability Advocate

At 76 years old, Professor Richard Bruggemann is continuing to make a difference to the lives of people living with an intellectual disability. Throughout his career, he has provided expert advice to governments on disability services, legislation, inclusion and rights. He is a dedicated volunteer, has sat on more than 20 non-government boards and committees, and is a prolific writer on topics of concern for the disability community. This year, he was called on by the South Australian Government to join the special taskforce investigating the tragic death of cerebral palsy sufferer, Ann Marie Smith. Richard was also appointed to a new government role to assess the temporary orders to protect people living with a cognitive or mental impairment from the spread of the COVID-19 virus. His ongoing leadership has helped create a community service system that helps people with intellectual disability and their families enjoy a better quality of life.

2021 Young Australian of the Year
Isobel Marshall - Social Entrepreneur

At just 18 years of age, Isobel Marshall co-founded TABOO with school friend Eloise Hall, to help women around the world by breaking down stigma around menstruation and providing greater access to hygiene products. Isobel and business partner Eloise, crowdfunded $56,000 to launch their range of products in August 2019. TABOO sells high quality, ethically sourced, organic cotton pads and tampons to an Australian market, with 100 per cent of net profits going to One Girls – a charity providing education programs for girls and women in Sierra Leone and Uganda. Locally, Isobel and TABOO have partnered with Vinnies Women’s Crisis centre, providing free access to pads and tampons for women who require emergency accommodation in South Australia. Recognising period poverty is not just a big city issue, they also support the Ngaanyatjarra Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara Women’s Council. Isobel is also a full-time student at the University of Adelaide, where she is studying a Bachelor of Medicine (MBBS) and a Bachelor of Surgery.


2021 SA State Recipient Local Hero
Russell Ebert OAM - Respectful Relationships Advocate

Former footballer Russell Ebert OAM is a legendary figure with the Port Adelaide Football Club. A four-time winner of the Magarey Medal, awarded to the best and fairest player in the South Australian National Football League, he’s considered one of the club’s greatest players of all time. Today, Russell continues to give back to the club and the South Australian community through his leadership of the club’s Power Community Ltd (PCL) youth programs. He is particularly passionate about PCL’s Power to End Violence Against Women (PTEVAW) program, which he delivers to Year 10 students around the state. Developed with Centacare Catholic Family Services and the South Australian Department for Education, PTEVAW challenges gender-based attitudes and promotes respectful relationships and an end to domestic violence. The program has reached more than 5,000 students since starting in 2016. Russell is also a passionate supporter of children living with disabilities and is a fundraising ambassador for disability services organisation, Novita.


2021 Australian of the Year (SA) Finalists:
Jennifer Howard - CEO and Founder of Safe Pets Safe Families

Dr Joy O'Hazy - Doctor and Initiator of Birthing Kits
Professor Nicola Spurrier - Chief Public Health Officer, Paediatrician and Physician

2021 Senior Australian of the Year (SA) Finalists:
Dr David Squirrell - Advocate for the Vision Impaired
Pamela Catcheside - Mycologist
Peter Mungkuri OAM - Artist and Cultural Leader


2021 Young Australian of the Year (SA) Finalists:
Alicia Beik - Businesswoman and Migrant Activist
Holly Scott - Road Safety Advocate
Tori Marshall - Founder and Director of Lift Up Voices

2021 Local Hero (SA) Finalists:
Craig Scott - President of Goodwood Saints Football Club
Melanie Tate - CEO and Founder Puddle Jumpers Inc
Rodney O'Brien - Kaurna Cultural Advisor


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