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Australia, the magazine : Australia, the magazine
12 personal view ELIZABETH BRODERICK Commisioner for Sex Discrimination, Commissioner for Age Discrimination "Australia is a place of great beauty and opportunity that values different voices. It is a compassionate and caring country, where men and women from diverse backgrounds have come together to create a nation that believes in fairness. Australia embraces equality -- not just equality of opportunity but, over time, equality of outcomes. It may not be an international financial hub, yet Australia strives to be a place where paid work and the other parts of life can be integrated." GLENN FERGUSON President, Law Council of Australia "I love it when the wheels of the Qantas jet touch down and my feet hit Australian soil again. It never ceases to amaze me that I continue to feel such a strong connection. But Australia is a country that will do that to you. It will claim you as its own, irrespective of background, and reward you with opportunity. Australia embraces people from all walks of life. We celebrate our various ethnic origins and are proud of our unique indigenous culture. We nurture and foster world leaders in academia, the arts, business and sport. We are not constrained by cultural boundaries and social stigmas -- it doesn't matter who your parents are, whether you hail from a regional town, a remote indigenous community or an urban city -- if you have the ability, the drive and the passion you will be supported to achieve. I was born in India and educated in England and have travelled all over the world. To this day there is no place I would rather be. Nowhere else could offer me the lifestyle and opportunity I have been afforded here." NICHOLAS MOORE MD and CEO, Macquarie Group Limited "The Australian financial services sector is one of the most competitive in the world. Behind the success of the industry, here and internationally, is a highly-educated, multicultural workforce, a strong and efficient economy, and a stable political environment." ❝My parents came to Australia in 1966 as '10 pound poms,' which means they emigrated from England with a one-way ticket on the Fairstar with the promise of a new life in which to bring up their ever-growing family. The cost, just 10 pounds! (Now that's a deal!) I was born two years later and to this day I am so grateful that they chose Australia to raise their family. I have always loved being an Australian, growing up there with its sense of hope, possibility and adventure, and yet, I always dreamed of the time I was old enough to travel and explore the world. All my relatives lived in Europe and my parents' stories of life overseas only whetted my appetite. Well, I have travelled the world over more than once now, and I have seen amazing places, lived and worked with extraordinary people from every continent. Not surprisingly, it has given me a unique and even sharper view of the country of my birth. That huge island with its small population is like no other. Its physical beauty is simply astonishing. As soon as I get off the plane coming home, it seems like the whole world has been washed -- the light, the smell, the sea -- everything feels vibrant, alive and fresh. Even the food tastes better! But without a doubt, what I miss and cherish the most about Australia is the people. There is an optimism and love of life, a sense of humour and toughness that is always disarming. Always honest (sometimes too honest!) and down-to-earth. People are judged by their actions and life is measured not by success but by the quality of friendships and community. While I am only a first generation Australian, I feel like an Aussie to the core so thanks Mum and Dad, for jumping on that six-week cruise over 40 years ago. It is a decision I will forever be grateful for." HUGH JACKMAN ACTOR Chris Pavlich/Newspix