UQ Health and Behavioural Sciences community celebrated in Australia Day Honours

31 Jan 2024

UQ Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences leaders, educators, researchers and partners have been acknowledged for their significant contributions to community in the 2024 Australia Day Honours.

Emeritus Professor Deborah Theodoros, Professor Bruce Abernethy, Adjunct Professor Adrian Carson, Associate Professor David Thomson and Professor Cliff Mallett join more than 40 UQ community members acknowledged in this year’s honours list.

UQ Faculty Executive Dean Professor Louise Hickson congratulated the award recipients.

“It’s inspiring to read the achievements of our leaders, educators and researchers who were recognised,” Professor Hickson said.

“I congratulate these talented recipients for their dedication and significant contributions to improving society across the fields of health and behavioural science, Indigenous health, community health, sport psychology and coaching, rehabilitation sciences, dentistry, and tertiary education.

Emeritus Professor Deborah Theodoros has been appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for distinguished service to community health, rehabilitation sciences, and tertiary education.

Professor Theodoros’s research in the field of telerehabilitation provided evidence that speech pathology services and other allied health services could be delivered online reliably.

“I was honoured and humbled by this award and am delighted it will raise the profile of the speech pathology profession and rehabilitation science,” Emeritus Professor Theodoros said.

“An achievement I’m most proud of is my involvement in the establishment of the UQ Telerehabilitation Clinic to teach students how to deliver allied health services remotely.

“I’m driven by the inequity of health and education services in rural and remote areas of Australia to both children and adults and the potential for telerehabilitation to negate the tyranny of distance.”

Professor Bruce Abernethy has been made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for his significant service in the field of health and behavioural science.

“It’s humbling and flattering to receive this honour, and I'm especially fortunate to have been part of an exceptional team within the Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences that has built strong alliances with many health sector partners,” Professor Abernethy said.

“These collaborations are fundamental to developing a more sustainable health system where clinical care and health promotion, training of the next generation and the advancement of knowledge work seamlessly together.”

Associate Professor David Thomson has been appointed a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for significant service to dentistry, particularly in the field of prosthodontics.

“I’m honoured to be recognised for my contribution to the dental profession and dental education over many years,” Associate Professor Thomson said.

“Most recently I was involved in re-establishing the UQ Doctor of Clinical Dentistry Prosthodontic program which has seen young prosthodontists graduate, ensuring ongoing specialist prosthodontic care for the community.

“I enjoy being able to pass on my knowledge and experience to others and mentoring postgraduate students.

“Dentistry has provided me with opportunities to contribute to the development of my profession, meet interesting people nationally and internationally and to give something back to a profession that has given much to me.”

Professor Clifford Mallett has received a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) for service to sport as a coach, and tertiary education.

“I was surprised but honoured to receive an Australia Day Honours award,” Professor Mallet said.

“It has been a privilege to work with great people in multiple contexts who have shaped and continue to shape my journey.

“I really enjoy being able to help others to pursue excellence and wellbeing, contribute back to society and develop sport psychology and coaching as a discipline at UQ and beyond.”

Adjunct Professor Adrian Carson has been appointed a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for significant service to Indigenous health through research and development programs.

"I feel very humbled, and quite conflicted.

"It has been an opportunity to reflect on the almost 30 years I’ve been privileged to work in the community controlled health sector and how lucky I’ve been to work with so many great people over that time.

"Particularly the Elders who took time to support me, who showed me the power of their compassion, dedication, and commitment to community and what that can achieve."

Honorary Associate Professor Deborah Parker has been appointed a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for significant service to community health, particularly through palliative and aged care research.

Read the UQ News article for the full list of UQ recipients.

Media: Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences Communications, habs.media@uq.edu.au