WA 2023 Australian of the Year recipients inspire at Pink Ribbon Breakfast

  • 23 October 2023

Auspire – Australia Day Council WA attended the BreastScreen WA Pink Ribbon Breakfast on Monday 23 October, where WA 2023 Australian of the Year, Professor Samar Aoun, and WA 2023 Senior Australian of the Year, Theresa Kwok, were keynote speakers.

The two alumni were asked to share their inspiring personal stories, including their lives before moving to Australia, their impact after arrival, and their experience of the Australian of the Year Awards.

woman speaking at lectern on stage

Theresa, who is CEO of Chung Wah Aged & Community Care, spoke of the culture shock she faced when migrating with confidence following her years of experience as a social worker in Hong Kong; closing by encouraging the audience to listen to their heart and be aware of social changes taking place around them.

Perron Institute Research Chair in Palliative Care at UWA, Samar opened her presentation with a nod to all four 2023 WA recipients in the Australian of the Year Awards, before going back to her beginnings in Lebanon, where she undertook health research surveys during times of conflict, onto London where she completed her PhD, and finally Bunbury in South West Australia, where she leads Compassionate Communities to support the community in end-of-life care.

woman giving presentation on stage
Samar shared how her Australian of the Year flag still hangs in her house

On the same day, the Western Australian finalists of the 2024 Australian of the Year Awards were announced. Find out who may be following in Samar and Theresa’s footsteps with this prestigious recognition here.

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