Vice-Chancellor Staff Excellence Medal for Dr Rhonda Faragher

Photo of Chancellor John Fahey, Dr Rhonda Faragher and Vice-Chancellor Professor Greg Craven

Dr Rhonda Faragher has won the inaugural Vice-Chancellor’s Staff Excellence Medal for her contribution to Mission Excellence, selected from a short list of award winners across the University.

The Vice-Chancellor’s Excellence Awards were presented to individual staff and teams in five categories at a ceremony at the Peter Cosgrove Centre in North Sydney on Monday night. The awards were introduced to recognise those who demonstrated exemplary work that modelled the values and work culture of ACU.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Greg Craven said ACU’s commitment to Mission and service made the University unusual, and each of the recipients were dedicated to these values.  Dr Faragher’s work to improve education for students with Down Syndrome was life-changing for students.

“Rhonda’s work is absolutely astonishing. It is a complete amalgam of research, teaching and service,” Professor Craven said. “This goes to the heart of what we do.”

Dr Faragher has been involved in improving the lives of people with Down Syndrome, particularly through education, since the birth of her daughter with Down Syndrome in 1996.

She joined ACU in 2006 and through research, teaching and service has made an exceptional contribution to those with and affected by Down Syndrome.

The Vice-Chancellor’s Staff Excellence Award winners:

Mission Excellence

Dr Rhonda Faragher for her life-changing work for people with Down syndrome in Australia and around the world.

Ms Leticia Medwell for her passion and support to ACU’s Clemente program, which helps vulnerable people gain access to university education.

Service excellence

Michael Dorman for the delivery of a motivational workshop that has boosted the morale of staff across the University.

Service Matters Improvement Team for exemplary service and commitment to the ACU community through the development and implementation of the Service Matters Framework. The project team consists of Mr William McKendry, Dr Betty Trezzi and Ms Nicole Van de Gard.

Innovation Excellence

AskACU Project Team for developing an overarching and consistent service model for students and staff, by tailoring systems, processes and spaces that enables a multi-faceted approach. The project team consists of Ms Joy Magee, Ms Angela Forrester, Ms Whitney Smith and Ms Louise Norton.

Excellence in Student Experience

Away from Base Midwifery Team for their outstanding collaboration with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students and graduates. The project team consists of Associate Professor Paula Schulz, Ms Machellee Kosiak, Dr Lynne Dunne, Ms Gail Baker, Ms Joclyn Neal and Ms Denise Burdett-Jones.

Research Excellence

Research Systems and Reporting Team for designing, developing and delivering a successful Excellence in Research Australia (ERA) Management System that allowed ACU to strategically shape its hugely successful 2015 ERA submission. The project team consists of Mr Rod Lewis, Mr Michael Murphy, Mr Matt Dixon, Ms Stefania Riccardi and Mr John Montalto.

Professor Neil Ormerod for his substantial and long term contribution to a renewal of Catholic systematic theology through a significant output of academic articles and books, with a focus on Trinity, Church and natural theology.

Successful individual awards were granted at $500 and team scholarships are granted at $2,500 (per team). The Medal winner receives $5,000.

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