Six central Victorians living outside the Bendigo area have been awarded medals or appointed as a Member of the Order of Australia
Graeme Nelson - Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM)
Rochester's Graeme Nelson has been heavily involved in a number of community organisations and played a prominent role in working towards improving the safety of young drivers.
A resident of the town since 1956, he helped develop the Rochester Rotary Driver Education Complex.
Mr Nelson said there was an enormous number of young people being hurt on farms and on the road, which spurred the creation of the complex to prepare new drivers.
Mr Nelson has been a Rotary member since 1992, was a board member of the Rochester and Elmore District Health Service, once chaired the Rochester and Lockington Development Group, and also sat on the Echuca Moama Tourism Board.
As well as his contribution to improving the safety of young drivers, Mr Nelson said he considered the work he did after the 2011 floods, organising working parties for repairs and clean-up, as one of his most important achievements.
Eileen McDonald - Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM)
Eileen McDonald's contribution spans apiculture, the disability sector, education, Scouts and more.
Mrs McDonald has been a member of the Victorian Apiarists' Association, the Bendigo branch of the association, and the Crop Pollination Association.
She was a co-donor of land to the Mount Alexander Shire Accommodation and Respite Group, which works to address the need for temporary respite and permanent accommodation for adults with disabilities in the area.
Winters Flat Primary School, Castlemaine High School and Castlemaine Technical College have all benefited from her efforts, as has the 1st Castlemaine Pioneer Scout Group.
Mrs McDonald has also been a foster carer, volunteered with a literacy program at Castlemaine Secondary College, and a representative for the Bendigo District Council of the Victorian Federation of State Schools Parents' Clubs.
Craig Opie - Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM)
Echuca resident Craig Opie has been recognised for his contributions to Victoria's tourism industry and the community.
Mr Opie sat on Tourism Victoria and Public Transport Victoria's boards, and was a foundation committee member of both Melbourne Attractions and the Victorian Tourism Operators Association.
Mr Opie is also an Australia Day life ambassador for the state government and the inaugural Victorian ambassador for Neighbourhood Watch
He has served as a board and committee member for numerous community organisations, including Blue Ribbon Foundation, Brothers 500 Club, Victorian Tourism Bushfire Appeal, Christian Brothers Overseas Aid Fund, East Timor Help Group and the Starlight Children's Foundation.
He was a member of the Small Business Advisory Corporation, and has held the position of managing director for three businesses.
Mr Opie hosted a tourism radio show on Melbourne station 3AK for three years.
Eleanor Pollard - Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM)
Eleanor Pollard of Wycheproof is honoured for service to the community through a range of organisations, including the former town shire, Scouts and the Probus Club, among others.
Mrs Pollard has been a member of the Wycheproof Presbyterian Church/Uniting Church since 1961 and in that time has been the presbytery representative, a religious instruction leader and the parish secretary.
She served as a councillor on the then-Wycheproof Shire from 1987 to 1995, including as president in 1994-95.
Mrs Pollard is also involved with the Senior Citizens Club, is a life member of the Wycheproof Community Resource Centre and was on the Wycheproof Community Management Committee.
She was a member of the international training team of the Australian Scout Association and held other positions within the organisation.
Eric Scoble - Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM)
Kyneton's Eric Scoble has contributed to the town through several sporting clubs, cultural organisations, business, and other community causes.
Mr Scoble is president of the Kyneton Daffodil and Arts Festival, an organisation to which he has belonged for more than 40 years.
He has volunteered as Father Christmas since 2005, and at aged care home RM Begg.
A long list of organisations have enjoyed his service, including the Victorian Daffodil Society, Stroke Foundation and Stroke Kids, Kyneton Men's Shed, Kyneton District Business and Tourism Association, Kyneton Vehicle Appreciation Society, Kyneton Junior Football Club, Kyneton Lions Club, Kyneton Junior Soccer, Kyneton Little Athletics, Kyneton Cycling Club and Kyneton Trotting Club.
Dr Rodney Syme - Member of the Order of Australia (AM)
Dr Rodney Syme, a longtime advocate for euthanasia, is being appointed a Member of the Order of Australia for his significant service to social welfare initiatives and law reform.
Dr Syme has been vice-president of Dying with Dignity Victoria since 2007, served as the organisation's president from 1996 to 2007, and prior to that was the president of the Voluntary Euthanasia Society of Victoria.
He has also been a member and a past board member of the World Federation of Right to Die Societies.
The former head of the Austin Repatriation Medical Centre's urology unit is the chair of Your Last Right, which campaigns for law reform on voluntary euthanasia in Australia.
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