AARE Member Accolades and Awards


We are keen to know of Awards presented to members. There are so many amazing people among the membership and your successes provide inspiration for the rest of us. Don’t be shy to share your wonderful stories, send them to us aare@aare.edu.au.

AARE Secretary and executive member Emeritus Professor John Lester, a Wonnarua Elder, has received the NSW Department Executive Director, School Performance Excellence Award for his work as Elder in Residence at Adamstown Primary school. Just a hint of the warmth, respect and admiration for John that earned him the nomination is evident in the following:

Uncle John promotes a safe and inclusive learning environment by greeting students and their families at the school gate, sharing his wealth of knowledge at Kindergarten transitions, hosting open Q&A forums, attending P&C meetings, PLP afternoons, NAIDOC events and is a fixture in all of the classrooms. The students, community and teachers can visibly see and feel the unconditional patience, time, knowledge and joy that Uncle John brings to our school community every week.

John has over 40 years operative and managerial leadership in Indigenous education and training covering school, TAFE and University. He was awarded the Ray Debus AARE National Doctorate Award for most outstanding doctorate in education in 2017.