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2022 J C Bannon Oration

Tuesday 18 October 2022 @ 5:15 pm - 6:30 pm

The 2022 J C Bannon Oration was given by Professor Melanie Oppenheimer on Tuesday 18 October 2022 at 5.15pm at St Mark’s College, and live-streamed. The topic of the 2022 Oration was “Volunteering for the Ages”.

The J C Bannon Oration is one of the most significant events in the annual calendar of the College. It is given in memory of Dr John Bannon AO, the seventh Master of the College (2000-07), who had earlier served as the second longest serving Premier of South Australia (1982-92).

You can watch a recording of the 2022 Oration here.

Orator: Professor Melanie Oppenheimer FASSA

Professor Melanie Oppenheimer (BA, Dip. Ed (UNE); M. Litt (UNE); PhD (Macquarie University) is an Australian historian and a researcher based in the School of History at the Australian National University. She was previously Professor and Chair of History at Flinders University and has held positions in Australian History at the University of Western Sydney, the University of New England and the University of Tokyo. Melanie completed a three-year term as a member of the ARC College of Experts in 2018. She is a Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia and was elected President of the Australian Historical Association for a two-year term (2020-22). She is a member of Volunteering Australia’s National Strategy for Volunteering Council and Chair of its Research Working Group. Melanie was invited to join the Editorial Board of the Australian Dictionary of Biography for a five-year term in 2021 and also co-chairs the ADB’s Women’s Working Party.

For over twenty-five years, Melanie has been interested in exploring the role of voluntary organisations, volunteers and voluntary action in times of war and peace; the history of volunteering, gender and humanitarianism, with a special interest in the Australian Red Cross and the Red Cross Movement. Her five ARC funded projects include soldier settlement schemes post-WWI; a history of the 1970s Australian Assistance Plan; Meals on Wheels; and a history of the League of Red Cross Societies. She has worked with not-for-profit organisations and governments and is widely published, most notably (with Neville Wylie and James Crossland, eds) The Red Cross Movement: myths, practices and turning points (2020); Volunteering in Australia (2014); The Power of Humanity: 100 Years of Australian Red Cross (2014); (with Bruce Scates) The Last Battle: Soldier Settlement in Australia, 1916-1939Volunteering: Why we can’t survive without it (2008); and Oceans of Love (about WWI nurse Narrelle Hobbes) (2006). Melanie is currently completing a biography of Lady Helen and Sir Ronald Munro Ferguson, titled ‘The Imperial Power Couple’, and she recently completed a Fellowship at the National Library of Australia where she worked on the vice-regal project.



Tuesday 18 October 2022
5:15 pm - 6:30 pm
Event Category:


St Mark’s College
46 Pennington Terrace
North Adelaide, South Australia 5006 Australia
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8334 5600