Honorary awards

John Boyd Reid AO

The title of Honorary Fellow of the University was conferred upon John Boyd Reid AO, LLB Melb HonDBus CSU HonPhD Qld, CPEng FIEAust FAIM FAICD, at a conferring of degrees ceremony held on 21 May 2004.

Mr Reid was a Director on the Board of Management of University of NSW’s Australian Graduate School of Mnagement from 1991, Chairman of the Board from 1997-8 and Emeritus Chairman of the merged AGSM from 1999.


Chancellor, I have the honour to present John Boyd Reid AO, for the conferring of the title of Honorary Fellow of the University.

The lengthy association of prominent businessman and philanthropist John Reid with the University of Sydney and the Australian Graduate School of Management, has contributed much to the success of both institutions. As chairman of the AGSM Board of Management from 1997 to 1998 Mr Reid was a steady support and guiding hand in the merger of The University of Sydney’s Graduate School of Business with The University of New South Wales’ AGSM. As a former Board member and Chairman, and current Emeritus Chairman of the AGSM, his personal contribution to the School’s growth was further enhanced by a broad national and international business network.

Mr Reid was the Chairman of James Hardie Industries from 1973 to 1996 and has served as a Director and Chairman of many of Australia’s flagship companies such as BHP, Qantas Airways Ltd, Barclays Australia Ltd, Bell Resources and Coles Myer. This outstanding contribution to industry was recognised in 1980 when Mr Reid was made an Officer (AO) in the General Division of the Order of Australia.

Mr Reid’s commitment to research was pivotal in the creation in 1999 of the Great Barrier Reef Research Foundation, a body that has brought together science and business in order to halt the degradation of Australia’s coral reefs. One of the Foundation’s current undertakings, the TMN (Tropical Marine Network) will, once completed, see a Bachelor of Science (Tropical Marine Science) undergraduate degree being co-jointly offered by Sydney, James Cook and Queensland Universities and the Australian Museum.

Mr Reid’s belief in the merits of closer ties between science and business also led to his serving from 1981 until 2001 on the board of the Institute of Respiratory Medicine (since renamed the Woolcock Institute of Medical Research, in memory of Professor Ann J Woolcock), the peak research body into asthma. He has also served on the boards of the NSW Education and Training Foundation, the Australian Scout Education & Training Foundation and the Australian Girl Guides Foundation. Mr Reid, who recently played a pivotal role in the setting up of the Centre of Philanthropy and Nonprofit Studies at Queensland’s University of Technology, has also served on The University of Queensland’s Development Council, Chaired the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney and the Leadership Committee of the YWCA and, for over 18 years was both Member and Chairman of the Salvation Army’s Sydney Advisory Board.

Beyond Australia’s borders, Mr Reid has since 1981 held the position of Global Counsellor of the prestigious Conference Board of New York; and from 1998 to 2001 served as Chairman of the Australia-Indonesia Institute, applying his not inconsiderable knowledge of Indonesia, its peoples and language to furthering relations between the two countries. From 1979 to 1985 he served as Chairman of the Australian Bicentennial Authority and, from 1986 to 1989, as Director of the World Expo 88. Mr Reid, who holds an Honorary Doctorate of Business from Charles Sturt University and an Honorary Doctorate from The University of Queensland, is also a Doctor of the Queensland University of Technology.

Chancellor, I present John Boyd Reid for the conferring of the title Honorary Fellow of the University.