This week, the Writs for the 2022 Victorian State Election were returned to the Governor.
The Governor’s program this week commenced with the swearing in of a new Judge of the Supreme Court of Victoria’s Court of Appeal, the Honourable Justice Lesley Taylor. An important aspect of the Governor’s ceremonial role, swearings-in of Judges of the Supreme Court, take place at a ceremony at Government House in company of the Chief Justice.
Community engagement continues to be an important aspect of the modern role of the Governor and this week, the Governor hosted a lunch for 52 disability workers who will be working on or around Christmas Day. More than 380,000 Victorians need assistance with core activities and disability support workers play a vital role in meeting those needs. The lunch was an opportunity to hear about their experiences and recognise their important contribution to the Victorian community.
On Wednesday, the Governor attended a Graduation Ceremony at La Trobe University to receive an Honorary Doctor of Laws Degree (honoris causa). La Trobe University is a leader in many disciplines and is connected to community in Melbourne’s north and in regional Victoria. Honorary Doctorates are awarded by La Trobe University to recognise an individual’s significant contribution to their field of expertise. Speaking to graduates of the La Trobe Law School, the Governor reflected on her legal career encouraging the graduates to continue their learning journeys beyond university. Read more of the Governor’s speech here.
Constitutional duties were an important component of this week’s program. On Wednesday 14 December, the Governor swore in the Honourable Harriet Shing MP as Minister for Regional Development, Minister for Commonwealth Games Legacy and Minister for Equality. Minister Shing was sworn in, in the presence of family and friends. On Friday, the writs for the 2022 State election were returned to the Governor by the Acting Victorian Electoral Commissioner, Dana Fleming, marking the conclusion of the 2022 State election. The writs include the names of the elected candidates in both houses of Parliament and can only be returned to the Governor after all results are declared by the Victorian Electoral Commission.
During the week, Mr Howard conducted tours of the State Apartments for Graduates of both the Department of Environment Land, Water and Planning and the Department of Premier and Cabinet. To learn more about the Government House tour program please visit here.
International Engagement on behalf of the State, continues to be a priority for the Governor. This week, the Governor received the call of His Excellency, Marģers Krams, Ambassador of Latvia to Australia. The visit was an important opportunity to further advance Latvian and Victorian people-to-people and two-way trade connections.
The Governor was also pleased to meet with Matthew Pierri, the 2016 Victorian Rhode Scholar and CEO and co-founder of SociAbility. SociAbility is a young, motivated organisation working to mainstream accessibility information to empower people with disabilities to greater social engagement. The Governor was pleased to hear about the plans to pilot SociAbility at the University of Oxford where, as a Rhode Scholar, Matthew undertook a Master of Public Policy and MSc in Social Science of the Internet.