Dr Kevin Murfitt AM has today been recognised for his services to the blindness and low vision community in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List.
Vision Australia Chief Executive Officer, Ron Hooton said the award acknowledges Dr Murfitt’s achievements and contribution to the blindness and low vision community.
“We congratulate Dr Murfitt on this well-deserved recognition. For more than 20 years, he has selflessly volunteered his time, expertise and leadership in order to advance the social inclusion of people with disability,” Mr Hooton advised.
“Dr Murfitt has been a tireless advocate for people with disability, particularly in championing their desire to participate in meaningful employment and breaking down attitudinal barriers.”
In 2002, Dr Murfitt was recognised with a Human Rights Award from the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission for contributing to the Disability Discrimination Act (1992) Accessible Public Transport Standards.
Since completing his PhD in 2005, Dr Murfitt’s research has included the study of community attitudes towards people with disability and the implementation of the Willing and Able Mentoring Program, which prepares and empowers prospective employees with disability.
Dr Murfitt has also been involved in important disability research projects overseas, namely, the Voices of Pacific Children with Disability project in Papua New Guinea. Short films produced from this project are used by the disability, development and humanitarian sector globally to drive attitudinal change.
Dr Murfitt has also held volunteer positions on the World Blind Union.
Until the end of 2016, Dr Murfitt was a director of Vision Australia and for some time served as Chair. His Board service spanned ten years at Vision Australia (the life of the organisation) and a similar number of years as a director of the Royal Victorian Institute of the Blind. During his time on the Board and as Chair, Dr Murfitt presided over the merger of eight blindness organisations to form a single national organisation, Vision Australia.
“As Chair of Vision Australia, Dr Murfitt was a model of leadership, providing a clear vision for the organisation as well as being an anchor point for many staff,” Mr Hooton said.
“On behalf of Vision Australia, I congratulate Dr Murfitt and look forward to the great things he will undoubtedly achieve for the blindness and low vision community in the future.”