13 February 2012
It's an honour for RMIT alumni
An Olympic gold medallist was among the RMIT University alumni and staff recognised in this year's Australia Day Honours list.
Lydia Lassila has received a Medal in the Order of Australia (OAM).
Ms Lassila showing the skills that won her Olympic gold.
Alumnus Lydia Lassila, an Olympic gold medal-winning aerial skier, received a Medal in the Order of Australia (OAM), for service to sport at the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games.
"I really wasn't expecting it. However, it's an enormous honour to be recognised for service to my sport and something I and my family are very proud of," she said.
Ms Lassila won gold in Vancouver in the women's freestyle aerials, becoming Australia's fifth Winter Olympics gold medallist.
She has competed in three Olympics and was awarded the Australian Institute of Sport Athlete of the Year in 2010 for her sporting achievements and leadership.
Ms Lassila completed a Bachelor of Applied Science (Human Movement) at RMIT, graduating in 2006.
"My experiences as a student at RMIT were fantastic. I made a lot of friends and studied exactly what I was interested in - human movement.
"Although being an aerial skier involved a lot of travelling, RMIT staff were very helpful and flexible in making sure I could study and complete assignments abroad," she said.
Other RMIT alumni and staff honoured on Australia Day include:
Member in the Order of Australia (AM)
Dr Geoffrey Goodwin, for service to engineering through contributions to the ships and submarines of the Australian Navy. He holds a Diploma in Engineering (Aerospace) from RMIT.
Professor Mandyam Srinivasan for service to visual and sensory neuroscience through the Queensland Brain Institute as an academic, researcher and mentor, and to the national and international scientific community. Professor Srinivasan is a former staff member of RMIT.
Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM)
Colonel Graeme Finney, for service to the community of Wagga Wagga through a variety of charity organisations. He has a Graduate Diploma in Human Resource Management from RMIT.
Victor Wood, for service to arts and crafts in Australia as an artisan and through the Victorian Woodworkers Association. He has a Fellowship Diploma of Art from RMIT.
Joseph Caputo, for service to the Italian community in Australia, to the Victorian Multicultural Commission, and to local government. He has a Graduate Diploma in Human Resource Management and a Master of Business from RMIT.
Public Service Medal
Susan Williams, for outstanding public service to tsunami reconstruction in Sri Lanka and the Maldives. She has a Master of Social Science (International Development) from RMIT.
Conspicuous Service Cross
Lieutenant Colonel Craig Dobson, for outstanding achievement as the Commanding Officer of the 10th Force Support Battalion. He has a Master of Engineering (Integrated Logistics) from RMIT.
Australian Fire Service Medal
Alan Rhodes, for exceptional service to the Country Fire Authority in Victoria for more than 17 years. He holds a Fellowship Diploma in Geology from RMIT.