April 2018 Dinner Meeting

Previous Event
Date: Tuesday, 10 April 2018
Venue: Grand Ballroom, Novotel Wollongong NorthBeach
Speaker: Professor the Hon Gareth Evans AC QC

Incorrigible Optimist

Professor the Hon Gareth Evans AC QC FASSA FAIIA has been Chancellor of the Australian National University since January 2010. He was a Cabinet Minister in the Hawke and Keating Labor Governments from 1983-96, in the posts of Attorney General, Minister for Resources and Energy, Minister for Transport and Communications and - from 1988-96 - Foreign Minister. During his 21 years in Australian politics he was Leader of the Government in the Senate (1993-96) and Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the House of Representatives (1996-98). From 2000 to 2009 he was President and CEO of the Brussels-International Crisis Group, the independent global conflict prevention and resolution organisation.

He has co-chaired two major International Commissions, on Intervention and State Sovereignty (2000-01), and Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament (2008-10); currently Co-Chairs the International Advisory Board of the New-York based Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect, and is Patron and Emeritus Convenor of the Asia Pacific Leadership Network for Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament.

Gareth was made a Companion of the Order of Australia (AC) in 2012 for his "eminent service to international relations, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region, as an adviser to governments on global policy matters, to conflict prevention and resolution, and to arms control and disarmament", and in the same year was elected an honorary Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences of Australia (FASSA). In 2016 he was awarded by the Sir Edward 'Weary' Dunlop Asialink Medal "for long-term commitment to improving Australia-Asia relations". In December 2015 he was made a Companion of the Order of O.R. Tambo by South Africa for his contributions to the anti-apartheid movement. Foreign Policy magazine cited him as one of the Top 100 Global Thinkers for 2011 "for making 'the responsibility to protect' more than academic". In 2010 he was awarded the Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute Four Freedoms Award for Freedom from Fear, for his pioneering work on the Responsibility to Protect concept and his contributions to conflict prevention and resolution, arms control and disarmament.

He has written or edited 13 books - including his most recent, Incorrigible Optimist: A Political Memoir (2017), which will be available for purchase and signature on the night of our event.