USC honours distinguished public servant

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USC honours distinguished public servant


Published on 24 September 2014

A former Director-General of four different Queensland Government departments, Jim Varghese AM, will become an Honorary Senior Fellow of USC at its graduation ceremony on Thursday 2 October.

Between 1998 and 2008, Mr Varghese of Chapel Hill served as Queensland’s Director-General of Main Roads, then Employment and Training, then Education and finally Primary Industries and Fisheries.

During that time he oversaw major policy and public service reforms and, in 2009, he became a Member of the Order of Australia for his service to public administration in Queensland and to the community.

As Director-General of Education, Mr Varghese worked closely with USC’s first Vice-Chancellor Professor Paul Thomas AM.

“We both shared a vision for USC that was ahead of its time – a fully integrated campus where schooling, learning, skilling and work are woven into an innovation precinct that would grow and flourish, becoming a beacon of success and innovation,” he said.

“Paul Thomas and his team developed a great rapport with my senior team in Education Queensland – we were soul mates in thinking outside the square realising opportunities.”

USC Vice-Chancellor Professor Greg Hill praised Mr Varghese’s commitment to serving the people of Queensland and his contribution to the University.

“Jim Varghese was key to Chancellor State College being built next door to the University and helped enhance the visibility of USC at an important stage of its development,” he said.

Mr Varghese, 63, said he was proud to have served the people of Queensland under governments of both political persuasions as an apolitical public servant committed to making a difference and implementing policy with vision and purpose.

He is Chair and owner of the Leadership Company, a Director of the Springfield Land Corporation, a Director of the Queensland Mental Health Foundation and Deputy Chair of the Puuya Foundation in the Aboriginal community of Lockhart River.

— Jane Cameron

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