RECOGNISE these four history-making Australian women? You should.
They are our Australian of the Year award winners for 2015 - the first time women were honoured in all four categories.
The 2015 Australian of the Year is Rosie Batty from Tyabb, Victoria.
Rosie has risen above her personal tragedy and the great loss of her 11-year-old son, Luke, who was the victim of domestic violence at the hands of his father in a very public assault. Rosie’s story jolted Australia into recognising that family violence can happen to anyone and she has given voice to many thousands of victims of domestic violence who had until then remained unheard.
Rosie now champions efforts to fight domestic violence, making many media and public speaking appearances to shine a spotlight on the issue and call for systemic changes.
Her incredible strength and selfless efforts are an inspiration to many other victims of domestic violence, while her courage and willingness to speak out will make Australia a far better and safer place.
The 52-year-old has won the respect and hearts of Australians for her strength of character and the way in which she has taken her own tragic experience and turned it into a call for change to help save others.
The 2015 Senior Australian of the Year is 61-year-old Jackie French from the Araluen Valley, NSW.
Living in a shed and needing to register her car, Jackie wrote her first children’s book, Rainstones, in 1991. While her editor said it was the messiest, worst spelt manuscript ever received, the book was shortlisted for Children’s Book of the Year and Jackie’s career as a best-selling author began.
One of the few writers to win both literary and children’s choice awards, Jackie has published 140 books in 32 languages and received more than 60 literary prizes for beloved children’s classics such as Diary of a Wombat.
Overcoming dyslexia herself, Jackie is a tireless advocate for children with learning difficulties. As the current national Children’s Laureate, Jackie is travelling the country to promote literacy and share the transformational power of reading, creativity and story-telling in the lives of young Australians.
Passionate about the conservation of wildlife and our planet, Jackie is also a director of The Wombat Foundation which raises funds for research into the preservation of the endangered northern hairy nosed wombat.
The 2015 Young Australian of the Year is 21-year-old Drisana Levitzke-Gray of Balga, Western Australia.
The fifth generation in her family to be born deaf, Drisana is dedicated to helping other deaf people and advocating their human rights.
Born into a family with deaf parents, a deaf brother and a deaf extended family, Drisana cherishes her first language, Auslan. She promotes the deaf community as one without borders and one of rich language, culture, history and traditions.
As the only Australian selected to attend the Frontrunners international deaf leadership course in 2012 and 2013, Drisana worked with communities in Europe and Samoa to expand leadership capacity and human rights understanding of deaf youth.
In 2014, Drisana became the first deaf Auslan user to fulfil her civic duty as a juror.
Drisana is the embodiment of the concept of “deaf gain”, not “hearing loss”, inspiring the deaf community, encouraging others to accept diversity and promoting a positive image of deafness which says loudly and proudly: “It is OK to be deaf.”
Charity founder Juliette Wright is 2015 Australia's Local Hero.
The 41-year-old from Camp Mountain, Queensland is the Founder and CEO of GIVIT, a portal to ensure quality goods get to where they are most needed by safely connecting an online network of givers.
Inspired and relentlessly ambitious, Juliette is on a mission to alleviate poverty across Australia. Establishing the online platform in 2009 to connect those who have with those who need, Juliette is changing the face of how society helps its most vulnerable and marginalised people.
Juliette’s vision, hard work and determination have resulted in donations of more than 126,000 items to disadvantaged members of the Australian community through GIVIT.
Juliette’s passion is supporting each community by ensuring local donors give to local residents in need. In 2011, when Queensland was hit by devastating floods, GIVIT became the state government’s official website for matching donors and recipients - with 1.8 million hits resulting in 33,500 goods matched in three weeks.
Juliette's positive “can do” attitude inspires others to embrace philanthropy and she has just launched GIVIT Kids, a safe online platform for children to give new or pre-loved belongings.
To nominate for the awards go to Australian of the Year awards now.
Nominations close on August 3.
Fairfax Media is a partner of the 2016 Australian of the Year awards.