AUSTRALIAN OF THE YEAR IN THE UK
This award recognises an Australian who has excelled in their own right in the United Kingdom. In the 2016 New Year’s Honours list Sir Lynton Crosby was awarded a Knighthood for political services. He is a great Australian and in recognition of his outstanding achievements here in the UK The Australia Day Foundation considers Sir Lynton Crosby a worthy recipient of the 2016 Australian of the Year in the UK award.
Sir Lynton Crosby, AO is one of the world’s top campaign and organisation specialists. His advice and expertise is regularly sought by leading figures in both corporate and political sectors across the globe.
Born into a farming family, Sir Lynton grew up in the small town of Kadina, in the Yorke Peninsula, South Australia. He showed a keen interest in politics from an early age, becoming a Young Liberal at 18, he even directed, produced and acted in plays performed during Young Liberal Fundraisers. After completing his final year of school at Kadina, Sir Lynton moved to Adelaide to study economics at the University of Adelaide. After graduating he worked as a market analyst, however his interest in politics never waned. Refocusing his political ambitions, he began his climb up the Liberal hierarchy.
Sir Lynton played a key role in all four of former Australian Prime Minister John Howard’s federal election victories. In 1996 he helped guide Howard’s party to a landslide victory following 13 years of Labor dominance. In 1998, and 2001 as Campaign Director and in 2004 through his polling and strategy firm Crosby|Textor he repeated this success.
Sir Lynton Crosby’s services to Australian politics were recognised in the 2005 Australia Day honours when he was awarded an Order of Australia, Officer in the General Division. In the same year the Australian Financial Review Magazine's feature on powerful people of the decade placed Sir Lynton "in the pantheon of the most influential figures in Australian politics".
Moving to London, Sir Lynton worked as Campaign Director for The British Conservative Party during the 2005 General Election. The Party won 33 seats, the first net gain from Labour since 1992.
Returning to British politics in 2008, Sir Lynton was hired to rescue Boris Johnson’s 2008 candidacy for Mayor of London. Against the odds Sir Lynton led his client to a comfortable win in only four months. He repeated this success yet again for Johnson’s second term campaign, Back Boris 2012. On his election, London Mayor Boris Johnson described Sir Lynton as the “best campaign manager and political strategist he has ever encountered or even heard of.”
Sir Lynton has won and maintained probably the most intimidating and unquestioned reputation in British politics since he first became involved 10 years ago. Perhaps Sir Lynton's most renowned success was last year, as General Election Campaign Director for the Conservative Party. Sir Lynton was credited with steering the party to a historic victory. Taking the party from a 12 point deficit, to an almost 7 point lead – returning, for the first time since 1955, a Conservative Government with an increased share of the vote.. Critics were quick to add their praise, with Tony Blair’s former spin doctor Alistair Campbell tweeting: ”Pains me to say but after all my whacks Lynton Crosby ran a brutally efficient and ultimately effective campaign. They won we lost. End of"
Sir Lynton is a Patron of the Patchwork Foundation - which seeks to promote political outreach between all political parties and members of minority communities, especially young members and a long-term supporter of the Lord Baden Powell Foundation. He has also been a strong supporter of the Beanstalk Charity, which aims to provide one-to-one literacy support to children in some of the most deprived areas of the UK.
HONORARY AUSTRALIAN OF THE YEAR IN THE UK
Rick Stein has been a strong promoter of Australia, its food and its culture for many years. He embodies the strong connections that exist between Australia and the UK. The Australia Day Foundation consider him a stellar recipient of the 2016 Honorary Australian of the Year in the UK.
Rick Stein is an award-winning English chef, restaurateur, author and TV presenter. Best known for his love of fresh seafood, Stein sums up his attitude to cooking in the simplest of terms – “nothing is more exhilarating than fresh food simply cooked.”
Despite his laidback approach, he has had a dazzling career, having written over 20 cookery books, an autobiography and made over 30 cookery programs.
Born in Churchill, Oxfordshire, Stein grew up in the Cotswolds and spent his summers by the sea in Padstow, Cornwall. Stein didn’t always harbour ambitions to be a chef. After graduating from Oxford University he ran a disco before buying a nightclub in Padstow. Trouble keeping law and order with its clientele of burly fisherman forced Stein to close the nightclub the following year. Shifting his focus to the kitchen, he converted the site into a small harbour side bistro, The Seafood Restaurant. Specialising in freshly caught local produce by the fisherman who had frequented his club.
40 years on and the Seafood Restaurant is now the backbone to an ever growing business that includes: 10 restaurants, a cookery school and a hotel. His impact on the local economy had been so great that he was awarded the OBE in the 2003 New Year’s Honours list for services to West Country tourism.
Since his earliest series in the mid-90s, Stein has covered numerous food journeys around the world; adventures include Spain, Italy, France, South East Asia, and his latest series; from Venice to Istanbul. In the program A cook abroad: Rick Stein Australia, Stein showcased some of Australia’s greatest local produce to the world.
In 2009 Stein opened “Rick Stein at Bannisters” at Mollymook on the South Coast of New South Wales. A dream he has had since his first visit to Australia, commenting at the time of opening “ever since a memorable weekend eating Pambula oysters and flathead in Merimbula in the sixties, I’ve had the image of the clean blue sea and sweet seafood of the South Coast fixed in my head.” Such is his passion for Australia, he now splits his time between Sydney and the UK.
He is the recipient to countless individual and restaurant awards including the National Restaurant Awards Lifetime Achievement Award and Food Writers Guild Lifetime Achievement Award, English Seafood Restaurant of the Year Award and the Hotel and Restaurant Magazine Seafood Restaurant of the Year, an award won for six consecutive years.
A committed humanitarian, Stein is the patron of 4 charities; Dyslexia Research Trust, The National Mission for Deep Sea Fishermen, National Coastwatch Institution and The National Trust In 2013 Rick Stein released his autobiography Under A Mackerel Sky
YOUNG AUSTRALIAN ACHIEVER OF THE YEAR
IN THE UK
Twice Grammy-nominated Amy Dickson made history by becoming the first saxophonist and the first Australian to win a Classic Brit Award as 2013's MasterCard Breakthrough Artist of the Year. This followed the release of her third album, Dusk and Dawn, which attained the coveted No. 1 position in the UK classical charts.
Sydney born, Dickson began playing the piano at 2 and at 6 she was invited to join the school band. Her piano teacher suggested she take up the saxophone and although it was so huge she had to sit on a chair and rest it on a pillow to play, it was evident that this was the instrument that felt natural for her to play.
Dickson made her concerto debut at 16, and on her 18th birthday made her first recording as soloist with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. That year she moved to London to study at the Royal College of Music, and then at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam. She was recipient of the James Fairfax Australian Young Artist of the Year award, and has won major competitions including the Gold Medal at the Royal Overseas League Competition, the Symphony Australia Young Performer of the Year Competition and the Prince’s Prize. Previously, no saxophonist had ever won any of these titles before.
Recognised widely for her remarkable and distinctive tone and exceptional musicality, Gramophone has described her as ‘a player with a difference who has an individual and unusual tone... her phrasing is beautifully finished, her control of dynamic infinitely subtle’. As a concerto soloist Dickson has performed throughout the world with many of the great orchestras and in recent seasons has performed at the Royal Albert Hall, Sydney Opera House and the Vienna Konzerthaus. As a highly sought-after chamber musician, she has performed in prestigious series in the Berliner Philharmonie, Enescu Festival and at the Wigmore Hall.
Amy Dickson has released six albums on the Sony Classical label which showcase a diverse repertoire highlighting the versatility of her musicianship and of the varied capabilities of the saxophone.
Her latest recording with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, ‘Island Songs’, showcases her passion for commissioning new repertoire and has already met with international critical acclaim. An all-Australian disc of new music, it comprises Peter Sculthorpe’s concerto of the same title, which was written for Amy; Ross Edwards’ concerto, ‘Full Moon Dances’, which was also written for Amy and recorded live at the Sydney Opera House; and Brett Dean's ‘Siduri Dances’, which was arranged in collaboration with Amy.
Last year saw Amy tour the UK with the Scottish Ensemble to five star reviews including concerts in Edinburgh, Glasgow and the Wigmore Hall. Amy performed in Berlin, Tokyo, Sydney, Canberra and Cincinnati before making her debut at Latitude Festival. She performed for the BBC at Prom in the Park and received a 5 star review for her performance of Peter Sculthorpe's Island Songs at the Australian Festival of Chamber Music.
Amy is deeply committed to the development of new repertoire for the saxophone and she has already made a significant contribution to the instrument’s legacy.
Amy Dickson is proud to be an ambassador of the Australian Children’s Music Foundation and the Prince’s Foundation for Children and the Arts.