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Stoner Young Australian of the Year finalist

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  • Stoner Young Australian of the Year finalist

    Australian of the Year finalists named

    November 01, 2007

    ELEVEN medical researchers are among 32 state and territory finalists announced today for next year's Australian of the Year award, reflecting Australia's position as a world leader in the field.
    Golfer Stuart Appleby, from Victoria, and Tasmanian sailor/businessman Ken Gourlay are the only sporting types nominated for the top award.

    Three Australian cricket captains, athlete Cathy Freeman and tennis player Patrick Rafter have all been named Australian of the Year in recent years, leading to criticism the award was too sports focused.

    However, 2007 MotoGP world champion Casey Stoner, the 22-year-old motorcycle racer from the NSW Hunter Valley, is among the contenders for the title of Young Australian of the Year.

    Among the 11 medical researchers, head and neck medical pioneer Professor Christopher O'Brien AM, from NSW, has taken an early lead as favourite, listed by online betting agency Sportsbet at $4.00.

    Seven of the nominees are champions of indigenous causes, including Queensland's influential Aboriginal leader Noel Pearson and Bangarra Dance Theatre's Stephen Page (NSW).

    Country singer and Queenslander Lee Kernaghan, and Tasmanian violinist Peter Tantfield are the only musicians. There are no actors but there is a filmmaker, South Australian Scott Hicks.

    The rest of the finalists include people from the fields of social justice and welfare, an ecological architect, a philanthropic businessman, an oceanographer, and a Special Olympics volunteer.

    The National Australia Day Council also today announced state and territory finalists for Senior Australian of the Year, Young Australian of the Year and Australia's Local Hero.

    Finalists were selected from more than 3,000 nominations submitted by the public.

    Ms Tam Johnston, National Manager of the Australian of the Year Awards, said this year's finalists reflected the diversity of Australian society.

    "The state and territory finalists in this year's awards are from all walks of life - high achievers, community workers, pioneers and people who simply care about others," Ms Johnston said in a statement.

    "It's also great to see the number of indigenous Australians and people of non-English speaking backgrounds among the finalists this year."

    The nominee finalists for all categories will be announced at capital city events throughout November and will then proceed to national judging for the Australian of the Year Awards to be announced on the lawns of Parliament House in Canberra on January 25, 2008.

    Sportsbet's Phil Hannah has framed an early betting market for the award, making Professor O'Brien favourite, with Victoria's Kon Karapanagiotidis, a human rights advocate, and cardiac surgeon Professor Don Esmore AO, paying $5 and $6 respectively.

    Stuart Appleby is down to $17.

    Professor Hilary Charlesworth AM - Human rights champion
    Lin Hatfield Dodds - Social justice advocate
    Professor David Ellwood - researcher and healer/teacher
    Dr Clive Hamilton - Wellbeing activist

    Professor Paula Barrett - Child psychologist
    Anna-Louise Kassulke - Special Olympics volunteer
    Lee Kernaghan OAM - Country music singer/songwriter
    Noel Pearson - Indigenous leader

    Professor Larissa Behrendt - Indigenous academic and writer
    Professor Neville Hacker - Gynaecological cancer researcher
    Professor Christopher O'Brien AM - head and neck medical pioneer
    Stephen Page - Indigenous arts


    Stuart Appleby - Sportsman and benefactor
    Kon Karapanagiotidis - Human rights advocate
    Professor Don Esmore AO - Cardiac surgeon
    Wendy Lawson - Autism support advocate

    Dr John Church - Oceanographer
    Ken Gourlay - World record sailor and businessman
    Annette Peardon - Reconciliation activist
    Peter Tanfield - Violinist and mentor

    Michael Angelakis AM - Businessman and cancer supporter
    Dr Paul Downton - Ecological architect
    Scott Hicks - Filmmaker
    Brenton Whittaker OAM - Humanitarian supporter

    Mark Bin Bakar - Indigenous arts leader
    Professor George Jelinek - Multiple Sclerosis pioneer
    Dr David Joske - Contemporary therapies leader
    Patricia Lavater - Young women's supporter

    Professor Jonathan Carapetis - Researcher and paediatrician
    Dr Bart Currie - Health researcher
    Blair McFarland - Anti petrol-sniffing campaigner
    Miriam-Rose Ungunmeer-Baumann AM - Indigenous artist and educator


    Melissa Aveyard - Recovery supporter
    Julia Collin - Young leader
    Mei Shi (Diana) Ni - Community contributor
    Xian Zhi Soon - High achiever

    Melina Georgousakis - Science communicator
    Anna Ockert - Youth leader
    Lars Olsen - Orphans' champion
    Rebecca Scales - Legacy builder

    Alessandro Demaio - Health promoter
    Daniel Adams - Poverty fighter
    Alan Wu - Youth representative
    Elise Klein - Youth program facilitator

    Rachel Coxon - Biomedical engineer
    Bianca Moon - Equality campaigner
    Casey Stoner - World MotoGP champion
    Phoebe Williams - International aid leader

    Erin Riddell - Social activist
    Anna McInerney - Fundraiser
    Victoria Saint - Health advocate
    Niki Vasilakis - Musician

    Johanna Allston - Athlete and student
    Isuru Amarasena - Award winning achiever
    Robyn McKinnon - Youth mentor
    Jeremy Smith - Community contributor

    Caleb Campion - Top student
    David Johnston - Science and sports achiever
    Simone Liddy - Indigenous student mentor and sports achiever.
    Emma McLaren-Alexander - Voice for youth

    Madhusudhan Bhamidipaty - High achiever
    Simone McMahon - Organ donor advocate
    Aimee Silla - Environmentalist
    Allana Slater - Olympic gymnast

    - AAP


    Gotta love the WA finalist Madhusudhan Bhamidipaty - "High achiever"

    "And what is your claim to fame, Mr Stoner?"
    "I'm the World MotoGP champion mate, how about yourself?"
    "Ah, I'm what's known as a 'high achiever'."

    Originally posted by Melkor
    The Saint is all over the answer like a Saint on a cupcake.