As part of yesterday’s Australia Day celebrations Corrs Chambers Westgarth’s partner and CEO John W.H. Denton was appointed as an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) by the Governor-General in his capacity as Chancellor of the Order of Australia.

John was recognised “for his distinguished service to business and commerce, particularly in the legal profession, to the visual and performing arts sectors, to social welfare and the rights of refugees”.

This award represents the highest recognition for outstanding achievement and service in Australia.

After starting his career as a diplomat, John joined Corrs as an articled clerk in Melbourne two decades ago and has led the firm as CEO since 2001. Among many notable positions, John has been the Founding Chair of Australia for UNHCR since 2002 and has chaired the global engagement task force of the BCA since 2010.

John was surprised and honoured to receive the award, and said his ongoing focus was to influence policy directions and stimulate debate in support of a better Australia.

“I actively seek ways to strengthen ties between business and the community, and have been fortunate to guide and develop a number of organisations. I am also very proud to have worked alongside my colleagues at Corrs to create a world class firm that generates real value and opportunities for our clients, locally and globally.”

Chair of Corrs Chambers Westgarth board Teresa Handicott warmly congratulated John, “This is a resounding endorsement of John’s great leadership capability and contribution. Not just here at Corrs but in the many roles where John seeks to make a contribution to Australian society - in the broader legal profession, business, the arts, human rights and the role he plays in building relationships on the international stage.

“We are immensely proud of John and are delighted that he is being recognised for the impact he makes and the legacy of his work. His Corrs partners value greatly the leadership of such a talented and impressive individual.”

Nominations for the award come directly from the public.

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