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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 07 Hansard (Tuesday, 22 June 2021) . . Page.. 1900 ..

Awards for her defence of the value of architecture and commitment to the Institute of Architects’ members. As spokesperson for the ‘Hands Off Anzac Hall’ campaign, Clare has led a public interest campaign to fight for a building of not just national significance, but one of immense importance to the fabric of our city, Canberra.

Clare was awarded for upholding the highest possible standard of professionalism throughout the three years of the campaign, collaborating with other key interest groups, and explaining to the community, through extensive media and social media outreach, why buildings such as Anzac Hall matter.

In conclusion, this evening was a wonderful reminder of the important role that architects play in shaping our built environment so that it is sustainable, improves our quality of life and preserves the fabric of the city that we love. Our next step as a community is to ensure the benefits of this design flow to all.

Mr Neil Hermes—tribute

CEO Sleepout

MR PARTON (Brindabella) (4.51): Firstly, I would like to echo the thoughts of my colleague Mr Hanson regarding Mr Hermes, who has left the gallery now. Nevertheless, I think most people here have seen Mr Hermes around the place, particularly those of us who have been here for a while.

I just wanted to mention a couple of things that you may not know about Mr Hermes. He has probably got the world’s biggest collection of ties with birds on them. Every tie he ever wears has a bird on it or multiple birds. Furthermore, when you drive past Clarrie Hermes Drive up on the north side, that is his dad. So there you go. Often when I drive past Clarrie Hermes, I ring Neil, just because it reminds me. That is not what I rose to speak about, though, Madam Speaker.

This is an amazing city, full of wonderful people. I rise today to applaud Canberra, to applaud each and every Canberran who contributed to the Vinnies CEO Sleepout, which was held last week at locations all around Australia, including our own National Arboretum.

We have collectively displayed our heart to the rest of the nation by absolutely leading the way with donations to this extremely worthwhile cause on a pure per capita basis, by a mile. Across the nation in this fundraiser, we have raised nearly $9 million. But more than one million of that came from Canberra. We have done more than 10 per cent of the fundraising on this but, with 430,000-odd residents, we only comprise 1½ per cent of the nation’s population. That is absolutely staggering. We punch above our weight at least sixfold. We raised almost as much as Queensland.

So many records were broken on Thursday night, on a windy and bitterly cold night stuck up on a hill in the elements of a Canberra winter. It was my fifth Vinnies CEO Sleepout. I managed to sleep around five hours under a park bench, despite the friendly mouse rummaging through my bag soon after midnight.

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