Professor Marie Bashir was born in Narrandera, New South Wales and is a medical graduate of the University of Sydney, a former medical resident officer of St Vincent’s Hospital and of The Children’s Hospital. She is a Fellow of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists.
After completion of her post graduate studies in psychiatry, she was appointed to establish the Rivendell Child, Adolescent and Family Service to provide comprehensive specialist consultative services for young people with emotional and psychiatric problems. Her key interests have included child and adolescent depression, mental health issues affecting refugee and immigrant children, juvenile justice and Aboriginal health.
In 1987, she was appointed Director of the Community Health Services in the Central Sydney Area which enabled closer access to primary health care links with an emphasis on early childhood services, migrant and indigenous health, the health needs of elderly people, and communicable illness. Health promotion and health education strategies through a population health model were also key responsibilities.
In 1993, she was appointed Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Sydney, and in 1994 the Clinical Director of Mental Health Services for the Central Sydney Area. This was a time of major reform in mental health service delivery, which contributed to substantial change in the provision of public sector mental health services. Professor Bashir served on the Examinations Committee of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists and also on the Regional Issues Committee. She has established professional links with psychiatry departments in South East Asia, enabling educational exchange and placement of Asian colleagues for postgraduate experience in University of Sydney teaching hospital facilities. She has developed collaborative teaching programs between colleagues in Vietnam and Australian psychiatrists, and also with medical and nursing colleagues in Thailand.
Having had a special interest over many years in indigenous health, Professor Bashir has travelled extensively to visit remote communities in Central Australia, the Kimberley and Arnhem Land to gain a closer understanding of issues of culture and history which impact significantly on health. In 1995, in a partnership with the Aboriginal Medical Service, Redfern, she established the Aboriginal Mental Health Unit, which provides regular clinics and counselling at both the Aboriginal Medical Service in Sydney and mainstream centres. Links to some indigenous rural communities have also been developed through the availability of Telemedicine technology. She was appointed by the Hon Craig Knowles MP, Minister for Health, to chair the Implementation Group on Mental Health to oversee the development of further mental health services in New South Wales as part of the overall health reform process.
In March 2001, Professor Bashir was appointed Governor of New South Wales.
Her awards include Mother of the Year in 1971, and in 1988 she was appointed an Officer, and in 2001 a Companion in the Order of Australia. She was awarded the Centenary Medal in 2003.
In 2003 Professor Bashir received the Mental Health Princess Award, awarded by HRH Princess Galyani Vadhana of Thailand, for contribution to collaborative Mental Health programs between Australia and Thailand.
In 2004 she was made an Honorary Member of the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM), and also elected as one of Australia’s Living National Treasures. In addition, in March she received The Writers’ Council Award in Beirut, Lebanon, and was invested as a Grand Officer in the National Order of the Cedar by His Excellency General Emile Lahoud, President of the Republic of Lebanon.
In 2006 she was invested by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II as a Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (CVO). Her Excellency also received the Paul Harris Fellow Award from the Rotary Club of Sydney, and was made an Honorary Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (ATSE).
In 2007 Her Excellency was elected an Honorary Member of the New South Wales Masonic Club, and of The Australian Medical Association. She was also inducted as an Honorary Life Member of the Master Plumbers and Mechanical Contractors’ Association of New South Wales, and presented with an Honorary Contractor Licence for Plumbing, Draining and Gasfitting, issued by the New South Wales Office of Fair Trading. In 2007 Her Excellency also was the recipient of an Award for Notable Vocational Service from the Rotary Club of Sydney, and The Women’s College Alumnae Award from The University of Sydney. She also was awarded Honorary Life Membership of the Sydney University Graduate Choir. On 1st June 2007 she was elected the 17th Chancellor of The University of Sydney.
In 2008 Her Excellency was appointed Honorary Commodore, Navy Warfare Training, Royal Australian Navy. She was also invested as an Honorary Fellow of the College of Nursing Australia.
In 2009 Her Excellency was invested as a Chevalier dans l’Ordre National de la Légion d’Honneur by His Excellency M. Michel Filhol, Ambassador, on behalf of His Excellency M. Sarkozy, President of the French Republic. In 2014, she was promoted to the rank of Officer in the Legion d’Honneur.
In 2012 Her Excellency was invested with the Lebanese National Order of the Cedar, Grand Cordon Grade, by the President of the Republic of Lebanon, His Excellency General Michel Sleiman.
In 2013 Her Excellency was awarded the Tikkun Olam (Repair the World) Award by Hadassah Australia Inc, and the People’s Health Medal, for significant contribution to health development in Vietnam (Ministry of Health).
In June 2014, Her Excellency was named as a Dame of the Order of Australia for extraordinary and pre-eminent achievement and merit in service to the administration, public life, and people of New South Wales, to medicine, particularly as an advocate for improved mental health outcomes for the young, marginalised and disadvantaged, to international relations, through the promotion of collaborative health programs, and as a leader in tertiary education.
Professor Bashir is married to Sir Nicholas Shehadie AC OBE. They have two daughters and a son, and six grandchildren.
1971 Mother of the Year
1988 Officer of the Order of Australia AO for services to child and adolescent health, especially mental health
2001 Companion of the Order of Australia (AC) on appointment as Governor of New South Wales on March 1, 2001
2001 Honorary Colonel, The Royal New South Wales Regiment, Australian Army
2001 Honorary Fellow, Australian College of Health Service Executives
2001 Deputy Prior and Dame of the Order of St John
2001 Chief Scout for New South Wales
2002 Honorary Fellow, Australasian College of Biomedical Scientists
2002 Honorary Degree of Doctor of the University, Australian Catholic University
2002 Honorary Degree of Doctor of Medicine, University of Sydney
2002 Honorary Air Commodore, Squadron 22, Royal Australian Air Force
2003 Honorary Member of United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM)
2003 Centenary Medal
2003 Mental Health Princess Award (awarded by HRH Princess Galyani Vadhana of Thailand)
2004 Elected as one of Australia’s Living National Treasures
2004 Grand Officer in the National Order of the Cedar (Lebanon)
2004 The Writers’ Council Award (Lebanon)
2004 Honorary Fellow, The Australian College of Legal Medicine
2004 Honorary Degree of Doctor of Science, The University of New South Wales
2004 Life Member of the National Trust of Australia (New South Wales)
2004 Honorary Degree of Doctor of the University, Southern Cross University
2005 Community Supporter – Metro/East Regions Award, SX PRIDE Week Awards
2006 Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (CVO)
2006 Paul Harris Fellow Award (Rotary Club of Sydney)
2006 Honorary Fellow, Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (ATSE)
2007 Honorary Degree of Doctor of Science, The University of Wollongong
2007 Honorary Member of the New South Wales Masonic Club
2007 Honorary Life Member of the Master Plumbers and Mechanical Contractors’ Association of New South Wales
2007 Honorary Contractor Licence for Plumbing, Draining and Gasfitting
2007 Award for Notable Vocational Service (Rotary Club of Sydney)
2007 The Women’s College Alumnae Award – The University of Sydney
2007 Elected 17th Chancellor of The University of Sydney
2007 Honorary Member of The Australian Medical Association
2007 Honorary Life Membership of the Sydney University Graduate Choir
2008 Honorary Members of the Toukley and District Senior Citizens’ Club
2008 Honorary Commodore, Navy Warfare Training, Royal Australian Navy
2008 Honorary Fellow, College of Nursing Australia
2009 Chevalier dans l’Ordre National de la Légion d’Honneur
2011 Inaugural Cath Hammond Award (United Grand Lodge of New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory
2011 Life Membership of The Returned and Services League of Australia (New South Wales Branch)
2012 National Order of the Cedar, Grand Cordon Grade (presented by President of the Republic of Lebanon, His Excellency General Michel Sleiman)
2012 Honorary Degree of Doctors of Letters, Macquarie University
2012 District 70 Toastmasters’ Communication and Leadership Award
2012 Life Membership of the Australian Legion of Ex-Service Clubs
2013 Honorary Fellow of St Andrew’s College, The University of Sydney
2013 Honorary Life Membership of the HMAS SYDNEY Association
2013 Tikkun Olam (Repair the World) Award by Hadassah Australia Inc
2013 Status of Distinguished Alumna by the Woolcock Institute of Medical Research
2013 Honorary Professor of Hanoi Medical University, Socialist Republic of Vietnam
2013 People’s Health Medal, for significant contribution to health development in Vietnam (Ministry of Health)
2013 Friendship Order, for significant contribution to building, consolidating and developing friendship between Vietnam and Australia (Government of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam)
2014 Honorary Life Membership of the Fellowship of First Fleeters
2014 Life Membership of The Macquarie Society
2014 Honorary Life Membership of the Women’s Australian Travel League Inc
2014 Promotion to the rank of Officer in the Legion d’Honneur
2014 Honorary Councillor of the Royal Agricultural Society of New South Wales
2014 Life Membership of the Union, University and Schools Club
2014 Honorary Degree of Doctor of Letters, University of Western Sydney
2014 The Returned and Services League of Australia (New South Wales Branch) Marie Bashir Perpetual Tertiary Scholarship
2014 Honorary Life Membership of The Women’s Club
2014 Officier dans l’Ordre National de la Légion d’Honneur
2014 Honorary Life Membership of The Queen’s Club
2014 Dame of the Order of Australia
2014 Life Membership of Twenty Ten incorporating the Gay and Lesbian Counselling Service
2014 Life Membership of No 22 (City of Sydney) Squadron Association
2014 Honorary Fellowship of The Institution of Surveyors NSW Inc
2014 Appointment as Honorary Principal Warfare Officer, Royal Australian Navy and admitted to the Roll
2014 Appointment as Honorary Governor of the NSW Police Force
2014 Received the Commissioner’s Commendation for Service and the Sesquicentenary Decoration, NSW Police Force
2014 Received the Silver Kangaroo Award – Scouting’s highest acknowledgement
2014 Honorary Life membership of the Sydney Jewish Museum
2013 Announcement of The Marie Bashir Institute for Infectious Diseases and Biosecurity, The University of Sydney
2013 Marie Bashir Public School Naming Ceremony, 159 Albert Road, Strathfield
2013 The Marie Bashir AEC (Aboriginal Education Council) Annual Aboriginal Scholarship
2014 Announcement of annual Marie Bashir Award for Excellence – Nepean Medical Research Foundation
2014 Sydney University Medical Society announced the annual “Marie Bashir Address”
1993 - 2001 Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Department of Psychological Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, The University of Sydney, Senior Specialist in Child, Adolescent and Family Psychiatry
1994 - 2001 Area Director Mental Health Services, Central Sydney Area Health Service, New South Wales Department of Health - Sydney
1996 - 2001 Senior Consultant Psychiatrist — Aboriginal Medical Service Redfern, and Aboriginal Medical Service Kempsey
1987 - 1993 Area Director, Community Health Services, Central Sydney Area Health Service, NSW Department of Health — Sydney
1972 - 1987 Foundation Director Rivendell Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Child Adolescent & Family Service (Thomas Walker House, Concord)
1993 - 2000 Consultant Psychiatrist to New South Wales Juvenile Justice Facilities
1971 – Present Fellow, Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists
1983 - 1992 Chairman, Council of The Women’s College, University of Sydney
1990 - 1992 Member, New South Wales Women’s Advisory Council
1991 - 1999 Chairman, New South Wales Juvenile Justice Advisory Council
1992 - 1995 Chairman, Metropolitan South West Region Customer Service Council, New South Wales Police Service
1993 – 2002 Member, Faculty of Community Child Health of the Royal Australian College of Physicians
1993 - 2001 Member, Steering Committee, New South Wales Transcultural Mental Health Unit
1994 - 1997 Member, National Health and Medical Research Council Working Party on Adolescent Depression
1994 - 2000 Member, Committee for Examinations, Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists
1994 - 2001 Member, Committee for Regional Issues, Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists
1994 - 2000 Psychiatrist Member (part-time), Mental Health Review Tribunal
1994 - 1999 Co-chair, New South Wales Strategy for Aboriginal Mental Health (New South Wales Health Department Working Group)
1994 - 1999 Board Member, New South Wales Institute of Psychiatry
1995 - 2001 Member, Telemedicine Steering Committee, (New South Wales Department of Health)
1995 - 2000 Chairman, Australian Health and Development (Third World Health) Group (University of New South Wales)
1996 - 1999 Chairman, New South Wales Task Force on Children and Young People’s Mental Health, New South Wales Department of Health
1998 Chairman, Review of Arndell Child and Adolescent Service, Northern Sydney Area Health Service
1999 – 2000 Chairman, Non English Speaking Background Suicide Prevention Project
2000 - 2001 Chairman, New South Wales Implementation Group on Mental Health, New South Wales Department of Health
2003 – Present Life Member, Chapter of Community Child Health, Division of Paediatrics, Royal Australasian College of Physicians