Congratulations to Dr Graham Farquhar, Senior Australian of the Year

Minister for Aged Care, Ken Wyatt AM, has congratulated Dr Graham Farquhar on being named Senior Australian of the Year by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull in Canberra.

Page last updated: 25 January 2018

PDF printable version of Congratulations to Dr Graham Farquhar, Senior Australian of the Year (PDF 207 KB)

25 January 2018

Dr Farquhar was the Australian Capital Territory finalist and is one of the nation’s most eminent scientists, celebrated for his work to improve food security.

“Dr Farquhar is a proud Australian but the impact of his life’s work, particularly in the development of drought-tolerant wheat varieties, has been felt around the world,” Minister Wyatt said.

“His efforts over many decades have helped lift agricultural production and include research into photosynthesis and how plants work.”

Dr Farquhar has received many previous accolades, including the international Kyoto Prize in 2017 and the Prime Minister’s Award for Science in 2015.

“The Australian Government has been a proud sponsor of the Senior Australian of the Year Award for over 10 years,” Minister Wyatt said.

“It is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate our seniors’ achievements and all they have to offer.”

Minister Wyatt congratulated each of the State and Territory finalists for their dedication across a broad variety of fields:

    • Obstetrician Dr Catherine Hamlin AC for her work in Africa providing care for fistula patients
    • Dr Dimity Dornan, a speech pathologist with a career spanning 50 years
    • Professor Paul Zimmet, who has been leading the field in diabetes research for more than 40 years
    • Aged care residents advocate and campaigner Barbara Spriggs
    • Founder of the Gynaecological Awareness Information Network Kathleen Mazzella
    • Senior Elder and educator Kathy Guthadjaka from Gwa in Arnhem Land
    • World-leading organic farming pioneer Tony Scherer
“The Turnbull Government recognises that Australia’s ageing population presents great opportunities for our society and economy,” Minister Wyatt said.

“Senior Australians also play important roles in helping maintain many volunteering and community based organisations and provide valuable mentoring for our younger generations.

“It is vital we continue to acknowledge their contributions through awards such as the Senior Australian of the Year.”

More details of the Australian of the Year Awards 2018 are available at

Media contact: Nick Way, Media Adviser 0419 835 449
Top of Page