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The Hon Peter Garrett MP
Minister for Environment Protection, Heritage and the Arts

Professor Carmen Lawrence to Chair Australian Heritage Council

Media release
9 June 2010
PG/69

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The Federal Heritage Minister, Peter Garrett, today announced that the Honourable Professor Carmen Lawrence has been appointed Chair of the Australian Heritage Council, the Federal Government's independent expert advisory body on heritage matters.

"I am delighted Professor Lawrence has accepted the position of Chair with the Australian Heritage Council," Mr Garrett said.

"I look forward to working closely with Professor Lawrence and receiving her input on the identification, assessment, conservation and monitoring of Australia's important heritage places.

"Professor Lawrence brings a wealth of experience to the important position of Chair and her involvement in heritage at both state and Federal level is evident throughout her distinguished career.

"As Premier of Western Australia she appointed the state's first Minister for Heritage, and at the Federal level she was involved in a number of Parliamentary committees for Environment and Heritage; Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs; and Native Title and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Land Fund.

"Her parliamentary experience includes state Treasurer and Federal Minister for both Human Services and Health and Minister assisting the Prime Minister on the Status of Women. Professor Lawrence is currently the Winthrop Professor and Director of the Centre for the Study of Social Change, School of Psychology, University of Western Australia."

Mr Garrett also thanked the outgoing Chair of the Australian Heritage Council, Tom Harley, for his commitment to heritage protection in Australia.

"Mr Harley was inaugural Chair of the Australian Heritage Council since it was created at the end of 2003, as well as Chair of its predecessor, the Australian Heritage Commission, from 2001. Mr Harley has played a major role in ensuring greater recognition and understanding of the importance of Australia's unique heritage places.

"I greatly appreciate Mr Harley's commitment to Australia's heritage and the impact he has had in ensuring the ongoing protection of some of Australia's most precious heritage assets for the benefit of current and future generations.

"Since becoming Heritage Minister, I have worked closely with Mr Harley and have been greatly impressed by his vision to make Australia a world leader in heritage conservation.

"Mr Harley has been an excellent ambassador for Australia's heritage.

"During his tenure as Chair, Mr Harley advised on the rollout of $60 million for heritage conservation through the Jobs Fund, the largest ever investment in our nation's heritage. Most importantly Mr Harley has overseen the expansion of the National Heritage List, which has steadily grown since its creation in 2004.

"The Council played a vital role in assessing applications and recommending projects that had the strongest heritage conservation outcomes. As a result of the Jobs Fund initiative, 190 heritage projects were funded around the country, providing support for more than 2400 jobs.

"The National Heritage List includes the places and stories that make Australia and Australians special-our amazing natural places, our rich Indigenous heritage, and the places and stories that reflect our development as a nation," Mr Garrett said.

There are currently 89 places on the National Heritage List. For more information go to: www.heritage.gov.au .

Commonwealth of Australia