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    Media Statements

    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Premier and Minister for Trade
    The Honourable Peter Beattie


    Premier and Minister for Trade
    The Honourable Peter Beattie

    Wednesday, May 09, 2007


    NEW YORK: A leading industrialist and an Academy Award winning film director and producer have been honoured in this year’s Queensland Advance Expatriate Awards.

    Premier Peter Beattie announced the 2007 awardees - Dow Chemical Company Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Dr Andrew Liveris and Academy Award winning director and producer George Miller – at an award ceremony in New York today.

    Also awarded were two honorary Queenslanders, South Carolina Biotechnology Incubation Program director Karl B. Kelly for his work in promoting Queensland’s leading biotechnology research in North America, and Discovery Studios president Clark Bunting for continuing the legacy of the late Steve Irwin.

    Mr Beattie applauded the four award recipients for their contributions to building Queensland’s international reputation.

    “Queensland is carving out a very profitable place within the global economy and we are enjoying strong trade and business relations thanks to the valuable word-of-mouth advocacy of our expatriates,” Mr Beattie said.

    “They are the best publicity imaginable, better than the most effective marketing campaign we could ever conceive, because they locally represent what’s so smart about the SmartState,” Mr Beattie said.

    “They are walking, talking advertisements for Queensland innovation and initiative.”

    Dow Chemical Company Chairman Andrew Liveris was awarded the Premier of Queensland Expatriate Achievement Award for his high level of success in his chosen profession in the United States.

    Dr Leveris is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the (USA) $49 billion global chemical and plastics manufacturer based in Michigan.

    Mr Beattie said Andrew’s 30-year career had spanned manufacturing, sales, marketing, new business development and management. He graduated from The University of Queensland with first class honours in chemical engineering, and was named Alumnus of the Year in 2005.

    Dr Liveris has been a member of the Dow Chemical’s Board of Directors since February 2004 and was elected Chairman of the Board last year. He has also served on the Board of Directors for Citigroup, the world’s leading financial services company.

    Acclaimed film director and producer, George Miller, now has another award for the mantle piece after being named the inaugural Queensland-United States Personal Achievement Award winner.

    Mr Beattie said the new category recognised a prominent Queenslander who had achieved high levels of success in their chosen field in the United States without permanently relocating from Australia.

    Born in Chinchilla, Queensland, George went on to write and direct box office successes Mad Max and Babe. He also produced Dead Calm and Flirting and the miniseries Bangkok Hilton and Vietnam.

    George recently spent 18 months in Sydney directing the computer-animated film Happy Feet, a musical epic about the life of penguins in Antarctica. The Warner Brothers-produced film is Australia's largest animated film project, with a crew of over 300 artists and technicians at the visual effects house Animal Logic in NSW.

    “Happy Feet brought George his fourth Academy Award nomination and his first win in the category of Best Animated Feature, and once again shone the spotlight on Australia and Queensland,” Mr Beattie said.

    The Steve Irwin Memorial Goodwill Ambassador Award was awarded to Clark Bunting, President of the Discovery Studios.

    Mr Beattie said this new award honoured arguably Queensland’s greatest cultural and goodwill ambassador to the United States, the late Steve Irwin.

    A 20-year Discovery veteran, Clark previously served as Executive Vice President, Discovery US Network Group and prior to joining Discovery Channel he was Executive Vice President and general manager of Animal Planet.

    Clark launched The Crocodile Hunter, catapulting the late Steve Irwin to international fame which helped make Australia Zoo at Beerwah on the SunshineCoast, a must-see tourist destination.

    “Through Clark’s work, Steve’s conservation efforts and passion for wildlife were not only brought to life but brought into millions of lounge rooms across the world,” Mr Beattie said.

    The Premier of Queensland Champion Award was awarded to Karl B. Kelly for his efforts in championing the State of Queensland in the United States.

    Karl directs the South Carolina Biotechnology Incubation Program, called SC Bio, which supports the creation of life science companies and the recruitment of biotech companies.

    “As Sister States, South Carolina and Queensland have been sharing their research efforts in the area of biotechnology, and Karl had been instrumental in bringing our states’ universities closer together,” Mr Beattie said. He led delegations to Queensland in 2004, 2005 and 2006 to explore collaborative opportunities.

    Media contact: Premier’s office 3224 4500