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Wine journalist Matthew Jukes has been crowned Honorary Australian of the Year for his contribution to the Australian wine industry.
Jukes picked up the accolade, which is awarded annually to a non-Australian resident who has displayed ‘Australian characteristics’ or has contributed significantly to to the country, at the Australia Day Foundation dinner.
Jukes has also helped raise $700,000 AUD for homeless charities over the years.
Previous winners of the award include Sir David Attenborough, broadcaster and naturalist; The Lord Goodlad, former High Commissioner to Australia and Baroness Susan Greenfield CBE, scientist, writer and member of the House of Lords. The award was presented by Hon Kevin Rudd, Philip Aiken, chairman of the Australia Day Foundation and His Excellency John Dauth, High Commissioner for Australia. On presenting the award, Rudd said” “Thank you for everything that you do for our country”.
Jukes said: “I am honoured to have the opportunity to work with such fantastic winemakers. Their attitude and energy is unfaltering and it ensures that year after year, Australia makes some of the world’s finest wines. Undeterred by climate change, difficult exchange rates, forest fires and natural disasters such as droughts and flooding,they continue to excel in their field and it is for this reason that I am delighted to champion their outstanding work.”
Other winners on the night include ‘Australian of the Year in the UK’, which was won by theatre legend Barry Humphries and ‘Young Australian Achiever of the Year in the UK’, which was won by fashion consultant, Yasmin Sewell.
Story by Gemma McKenna
Courtesy of Harpers Wine & Spirit Trades Review