Rod McGeoch, former Chairman of Corrs Chambers Westgarth and champion of Sydney’s successful 2000 Olympic Games bid, was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) on Australia Day.

Rod joined other high profile Australians such as writer and poet Clive James, native title activist Bonita Mabo and former federal minister Alexander Downer in receiving the award.

Even today, few people realise the full extent of what Rod did so Sydney could host the ‘best ever’ Olympics. His persuasive tactics included ensuring visiting International Olympic Committee delegates enjoyed a dream run of green lights en route to venues and opening Taronga Zoo when it was closed on a public holiday so one visitor could hold a koala. He’s since written a best-selling book about the campaign, called “The Bid”, and aided other bids including the successful Athens, London and Rio de Janeiro teams.

The Corrs partner alumni and former past President of the Law Society of NSW adds his AO to the Member of the Order of Australia he received in 1990 for services to the legal profession. An ABN AMRO report described Rod as one of Australasia's most influential directors, and his appointments have included Chairman of Vantage Private Equity Group, Sky City Entertainment and BGP Investments/Holdings plc. He also serves as a Director of Ramsay Health Care Limited, a board member of Destination NSW and Co-Chairman of the Australia New Zealand Leadership Forum.

But despite his top-flight legal and corporate career, Rod doesn’t mind just being synonymous with the Sydney Games.

‘I still get goose bumps at Olympic Park,’ he admitted to Nine News publication Nine MSN.

‘I like going when no one else is there and thinking about the contaminated site that was an old disused rail yard, and looking at it now.’

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