Australia Day Honour for La Trobe VC

La Trobe University Vice-Chancellor, Professor John Dewar AO, has been made an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) in the Australia Day 2020 Honours List, released this weekend.

In the Australian honours system, appointments to the Order of Australia confer the highest recognition for outstanding achievement and service.

Professor Dewar was awarded this prestigious title in recognition of his distinguished service to education through leadership roles in the universities' sector, and to professional organisations.

La Trobe Chancellor Professor John Brumby AO congratulated Professor Dewar, saying the whole La Trobe University community was delighted to learn of his award.

“On behalf of the La Trobe University community, I congratulate Professor Dewar on an outstanding career spent advancing the Australian higher education sector,” Professor Brumby said.

“He has made a remarkable contribution to La Trobe University and, most importantly, has had a positive impact on students, families and communities across the State.

“Under Professor Dewar’s leadership, the University has excelled in its founding mission to serve communities through greater access to higher education, contribute to public scholarship and debate, and undertake research on the important issues facing the world.

“His extraordinary leadership of the University is reflected in numerous indicators of our success since he joined La Trobe, including a 60 per cent increase in research income, exponential growth in our alumni engagement and philanthropy activity, and the University’s outstanding international reputation as reflected in the major international university rankings.

“Just as importantly, Professor Dewar has been a great champion of La Trobe’s regional campuses and the crucial role they play in advancing educational opportunity and regional development.”

Professor Dewar said he was humbled and honoured to receive the award.

“This award is an important recognition of the vital importance of higher education in Australia,” Professor Dewar said.

“I am very fortunate to have worked with some amazing people in the university sector, and I am lucky to work with such a talented and supportive team at La Trobe.

“I look forward to ensuring that La Trobe continues to pull its weight in supporting the growth and development of Melbourne’s north, through our University City of the Future, as well as supporting the communities that surround our campuses in regional Victoria.”

Professor Brumby also acknowledged all of the recipients of this year’s Australia Day Honours.

“My heartfelt congratulations go out to everyone who has received Australia Day Honours, including the staff, alumni and friends of La Trobe who have received these most coveted awards in recognition of their significant contribution to society,” Professor Brumby said.

About Professor John Dewar AO

Professor Dewar is the Vice-Chancellor and President of La Trobe University, a position he has held since January 2012. In 2019 the La Trobe University Council announced a three-year extension to Professor Dewar’s term as Vice-Chancellor through to 2024.

He has also held senior leadership and academic positions including at the University of Melbourne and at Griffith University.

A biography of Professor John Dewar AO can be found here.

An announcement about other La Trobe staff and alumni who have been recognised in the Australia Day 2020 Honours List will be made in the coming days.

Media Contact: Claire Bowers – – 9479 2315 / 0437 279 903