Curtin’s annual Alumni Achievement Awards recognise Curtin graduates who have achieved excellence, made significant contributions to the local, national and international communities in their chosen fields, and demonstrate Curtin’s values of integrity, respect, courage, excellence and impact.
Held in the glamorous Reveley Room at Perth Arena, guests were welcomed by Acting Vice-Chancellor John Cordery who spoke about an exciting year ahead in 2017, when Curtin will celebrate its 50th anniversary, welcome the first cohort of students to the new Medical School and launch a new strategic plan.
The key award categories comprising Professional Achievement, Global Impact, Young Alumni, Community Service, Volunteer Leadership and Lifetime Achievement, were presented to outstanding alumni, some of whom travelled internationally to accept their award.
Benyamin Bin Ismail, Curtin Business School Alumnus, received the Professional Achievement Award. Dedicating the award to his six-year-old daughter who travelled with him to the event from Kuala Lumpur, he was recognised for his crucial role in the success and growth of international airline, AirAsia.
The same award category also recognised Curtin Business School Alumnus, Alan Langford, who since graduating in 1985 has forged a successful career in business, including 27 years at Bankwest where he maintains the role of chief economist.
Also awarded for his professional achievements was Health Sciences graduate, Noel Fosbery, who owns and operates two Friendlies Pharmacies in the Perth metro area. Acknowledged for his service to the community, he spoke of the evolution of the role of community pharmacy as primary healthcare demands increase, revealing that his two pharmacies alone administered 3,500 flu vaccinations within just two years.
Sabina Shugg AM, Science and Engineering alumna and currently National Lead, Mining Performance with KPMG Australia, received a Professional Achievement Award. Among her many achievements, Shugg is the founder and chair of Women in Mining and Resources WA and was also named the 2013 Women of Influence Award Winner by the Australian Financial Review.
“I’m proud to be a second-generation graduate from the WA School of Mines. The skills I learnt there held me in great stead in what has turned out to be a very successful career”, she said.
Although graduating just five years ago, Humanities alumnus, Mohammed Zaheer Allam, has won a number of awards and currently holds the position of Island States Chapter Chair of the International Network for Traditional Building, Architecture and Urbanism. In recognition of his notable contributions to the industry, he secured a Curtin Alumni Global Impact Award which he dedicated to individuals and community groups fighting to protect the environment.
There were two recipients of the Young Alumni Award: Curtin School of Business graduate, Ashlee Harrison, for her not-for-profit organisation ‘zero2hero’, which aims to raise awareness and reduce the stigma associated with mental health issues, and Health Sciences graduate Nick Maisey, who created ‘Befriend’, an organisation that has encouraged a strong community of 4,500 people to break down social barriers and form new friendships.
The Community Service Award was given to Sherryn Reid, a Teaching graduate who has combined her passion for education and poverty alleviation through her sponsorship role at ‘AdoptASchool’ for Balinese children, while the Volunteer Leadership Award went to Western Australian Institute of Technology graduate for her role as an educator and researcher for the library profession.
The Lifetime Achievement Award was given to Freda Jacobs AM for her significant contributions to the occupational therapy profession, including founding the Independent Living Centre in 1977, which assists people of all ages and abilities to live more independently and being the state’s first member of the World Federation of Occupational Therapists.
“We are extremely proud of this year’s award recipients who have gone on to achieve great success and influence”, said Vice-Chancellor, Deborah Terry.
“Graduates are our greatest asset and these awards demonstrate the capacity of our alumni to be beacons for positive change.”