Close Search
News  |  Social Affairs

Governor General New Chief Patron of Volunteering Australia

20 October 2016 at 11:23 am
Lina Caneva
Volunteering Australia (VA) has secured Governor General Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC (Retd) as its new chief patron.

Lina Caneva | 20 October 2016 at 11:23 am


Governor General New Chief Patron of Volunteering Australia
20 October 2016 at 11:23 am

Volunteering Australia (VA) has secured Governor General Sir Peter Cosgrove AK MC (Retd) as its new chief patron.

VA president Tim Jackson said the VA board was delighted the governor general had accepted the role of chief patron.

“It is an absolute honour for VA to be accepted for patronage by his excellency and to be recognised as an organisation with national significance,” Jackson said.

“This is an endorsement of the importance of volunteering and recognition that volunteering makes a significant contribution to the Australian economy and society.

“We are excited about working with the governor general to advance volunteering in the Australian community, while continuing to acknowledge and celebrate the generous service of our nation’s volunteers.”

The governor general is currently patron of more than 150 charities and not-for-profit organisations.

VA thanked former patron Margaret Bell for her service to VA. Bell is the founding president of Volunteering Australia and the past world president of the International Association for Volunteer Effort (IAVE) She is currently the president of the Chain Reaction Foundation and CEO of the Mt Druitt Learning Ground.

“It is with great regret that VA has accepted Margaret Bell’s resignation as VA’s patron. VA expresses its deepest thanks to Margaret for her significant contribution to VA, as well as her ongoing commitment to strengthening volunteering in Australia,” Jackson said.

Outgoing CEO of VA, Brett Williamson told Pro Bono Australia News that from the organisation’s perspective it is delighted the governor general had taken on the newly created position of chief patron which was a great reflection on what volunteering means to the wellbeing of the nation.

“We will be looking now at inviting and appointing other patrons or ambassadors… looking at various leaders and well respected people within the community across a broad range of activities to become our ambassadors,” Williamson said.

In September Williamson, who has held the position for three years, advised of his intention to resign as CEO of VA, effective 1 December 2016, to return home to Queensland to spend time with his family on a permanent basis.

Williamson said at the time he had “mixed feelings” about the move, but it had been an “absolute privilege to be part of a team so totally committed to growing volunteering and civic participation in Australia”.

He said Thursday an announcement about his replacement is expected soon.

“It’s been a very exhaustive process and great candidates and I know the selection panel has been meeting regularly and hopefully we will make an announcement certainly before the the World Volunteering Conference which is being held in Mexico in early November.”

Lina Caneva  |  Editor  |  @ProBonoNews

Lina Caneva has been a journalist for more than 35 years. She was the editor of Pro Bono Australia News from when it was founded in 2000 until 2018.

PB Careers
Get your biweekly dose of news, opinion and analysis to keep you up to date with what’s happening and why it matters for you, sent every Tuesday and Thursday morning.

Got a story to share?

Got a news tip or article idea for Pro Bono News? Or perhaps you would like to write an article and join a growing community of sector leaders sharing their thoughts and analysis with Pro Bono News readers? Get in touch at or download our contributor guidelines.


Webinar Value Packs

Get more stories like this


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


National Volunteer Week shines a spotlight on volunteers

Mark Pearce

Monday, 16th May 2022 at 3:17 pm

The end of 'voluntourism' and the rise of skilled volunteers

Victor Lee

Monday, 28th March 2022 at 6:03 pm

Predictions for 2022: Volunteering

Mark Pearce

Monday, 21st February 2022 at 5:19 pm

Volunteering in a time of COVID

Mark Pearce

Monday, 6th December 2021 at 6:09 pm

pba inverse logo
Subscribe Twitter Facebook