Qld Aust of the Year nominees revealed

A philanthropist who believes the wealthy should use their money to benefit others – and is leading by example – is in the running to be Queensland’s Australian of the Year.

So too is a neonatologist who’s saved countless premature babies, an educator who is helping students report harm without fear, and a multi-talented man who is performer, didgeridoo player, basketball player, writer and story keeper.

Clive Berghofer is a Toowoomba-based property developer who recently donated $50.1 million to the Queensland Institute of Medical Research, just one of many donations made by the man who left school at 13, after struggling with dyslexia.


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David Cartwright, one of Queensland’s three other nominees for Australian of the Year, is a former director of neonatology at Royal Brisbane Women’s Hospital whose work caring for sick babies has contributed to big advances in treating premature births.

Twenty-five years ago, Rachel Downie became an educator to help young people and after a Year 9 student suicided she developed and funded Stymie, a site where students can anonymously report harm without fear.

Monty Boori Pryor has shared his passion for literacy and knowledge of Aboriginal storytelling around Australia, Europe and Asia creating a greater harmony, understanding and unity.

Other nominees for the 2020 Queensland Australian of the Year Awards include world-class tennis player, Ashleigh Barty, a travelling greengrocer, cancer researcher, pub choir leader, and veterinary researcher.

The 16 nominees in four categories are:

QLD Australian of the Year

* Clive Berghofer AM – Philanthropist

* Dr David Cartwright – Neonatologist

* Rachel Downie – Educator and social entrepreneur

* Monty Boori Pryor – Story keeper, writer, multi-talented performer

QLD Senior Australian of the Year

* Distinguished Professor Emeritus Judith Clements AC – Cancer researcher

* Peter Dornan AM – Men’s health activist

* Professor Ian Lowe AO – Environmental scientist

* Dr Peter Reid – Equine veterinary surgeon and researcher )

QLD Young Australian of the Year

* Ashleigh Barty – Professional tennis player

* Mark Halupka – Radio show host

* Astrid Jorgensen – Pub Choir founder

* Luke Yokota – Men’s nursing advocate

QLD Local Hero

* Adjunct Assistant Professor Nick Marshall – Founder, Albatross Nippers

* Fari Rameshfar – Travelling greengrocer

* Tiffany Spary – Homelessness activist and social enterprise founder

* Craig Tobin – Swimmer, coach, mentor

The four winners will be announced on Monday night at a ceremony at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre.

They will later join the other state and territory recipients for the national awards ceremony in Canberra on January 25.

© AAP 2019