Honourable Hieu Van Le AC, Governor of South Australia
Lighthouse Disability is pleased to have as its Patron, His Excellency the Honourable Hieu Van Le AC, Governor of South Australia.
The story of his struggle through adversity and the fulfilment of his potential to contribute to Australian society is an inspirational one for the Lighthouse community. In addition, his views and support are particularly valued because of his understanding of and affinity with people struggling to attain the best life they can.
His Excellency and his wife, Lan, left Vietnam in 1977, a country then in turmoil because of the recent war. They fled their homeland by boat to Malaysia, eventually arriving in Darwin as refugees seeking asylum in Australia. Settling in Adelaide, His Excellency undertook studies at the University of Adelaide to gain Bachelor of Economics and Master of Business Administration degrees. Then gaining accreditation as a Certified Practicing Accountant, this led on to work with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) where he led a number of high-profile investigations until his retirement in 2009.
His Excellency, meanwhile, had also become deeply involved in South Australian community life by serving on many boards and committees for the promotion of cultural and linguistic diversity and the arts and education. He was appointed a member of the SA Multicultural and Ethnic Affairs Commission in 1997 and performed as its Chairman from 2007 to 2014.
In August 2007, he was appointed Lieutenant Governor of South Australia, and in September 2014, he took on his current role as Governor.
His awards include an Australia Day medal in 1996 for services to ASIC, the Centenary Medal in 2001 for services to the advancement of multiculturalism and an Officer in the Order of Australia medal in 2010 for services to the South Australian community. He has also received Honorary Doctorates from Flinders University and the University of Adelaide. In the Queen's Birthday 2016 Honours List, he was appointed a Companion of the Order of Australia.
His Excellency is an active and interested participant in Lighthouse Disability community life and we thank him for his continued involvement.
Hon Kelly Vincent MLC
The Hon Kelly Vincent MLC, Vice Patron of Lighthouse Disability, is an outstanding role model in terms of achieving one’s potential, particularly for people living with disabilities given that she has required the use of a wheelchair since infancy.
In 2010, she was elected to the Legislative Council in South Australia’s Parliament as a member of the Dignity for Disability Party. She made history by doing so, being the youngest women elected to any Australian parliament to date, the first to be elected on a platform of disability issues and the first who permanently required a wheelchair for mobility.
Kelly is passionate about the rights and needs of people living with disabilities, and is also a keen human rights advocate. One area she has taken a close interest in is how the changes to the disability support sector brought about by the advent of the National Disability Insurance Scheme will impact on end-users of those services.
Having the particular interests and background she does, Kelly’s involvement in and support for the Lighthouse Disability community are highly valued.