2011 Senior Australian of the Year Equal rights campaigner
DOB: 8 / Oct / 1948
From: New South Wales
As a former Dean of Law at Sydney University, Professor Ron McCallum AO, was the first blind person appointed to a full professorship at any Australian university. He was also the foundation Blake Dawson Waldron Professor in Industrial Law (now known as labour law) in the university's Faculty of Law, which was the nation's first full professorship in industrial law. Ron taught labour law in Australia, Canada and in the United States, and has written widely on most aspects of labour law. He has also worked on industrial relations taskforces for several State Governments. In 2002, Ron was awarded a Centenary Medal for his role as a labour law scholar and advocate of Australians with a disability. In 2006 he received the designation of Officer in the Order of Australia for services to tertiary education and industrial relations as well as for his social justice work. Ron is the Chair of the United Nations Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and is the 2011-2012 Chair of the meeting of the Chairpersons of all of the United Nations human rights treaty bodies. On 25 January 2011, the Prime Minister designated Ron as Senior Australian for 2011. Ron was on the Board of the former Royal Blind Society, and on the Board of Radio 2RPH, of which he was its Chair from 2003 to 2011. Ron has served on the Board of Vision Australia since 2006, predominantly as Deputy Chair.
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