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AARNet, Australia’s Academic and Research Network, is proud to share the news that CEO Chris Hancock has been awarded a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in the 2021 Australia Day Honours.
The accolade recognises Hancock’s significant service to education and on-line research networks, and to Australia-USA relations.
“I’m proud and humbled to receive this acknowledgment,” said Hancock.
“It has been a great privilege to work with many of the nation’s best and brightest minds to drive the technological developments that empower Australian researchers and educators nationally and globally.”
The research and education community in Australia will continue to benefit from Hancock’s leadership of AARNet, the nation’s dedicated high-speed data network, cyber security and collaboration services provider for the research and education sector.
Since moving from the private sector to helm the not-for-profit AARNet in 2004, Hancock has overseen the evolution of the telco from a small entity into one of the most extensive and advanced networks in the world.
AARNet is owned by and interconnects 38 Australian universities and CSIRO. On Hancock’s watch AARNet has extended its reach to connect and further the research and education missions of metropolitan and regional hospitals, medical and other research institutes, vocational training providers, schools, galleries, libraries, archives and museums.
Today, AARNet connects over two million researchers, faculty, staff and students across Australia, supporting education across the life-long learning spectrum and research across a diverse range of disciplines in the sciences and humanities, and enabling unprecedented opportunities for teaching, learning and research.
Hancock’s notable achievements also include securing long-term high-capacity connectivity to Asia through investments in the Indigo and Japan-Guam-Australia subsea cable systems and leading initiatives to develop the global network architecture for interconnecting the research and education networks of 117 nations.
Under his guidance, AARNet has become a regular and trusted voice with both state and federal governments, community and society groups and acknowledged as a leader in Australia in the future advancement of the internet, including the development of cutting-edge networking architecture, applications and services.
Hancock’s legacy includes contributing to the development of relations between Australia and the United States. As a member of the Board of the Australian American Leadership Dialogue since 2013, he has led the development of the West Coast Leadership Dialogue, developing thought leadership and advancing technology partnerships between the two countries.
“It has been an absolute privilege to lead the West Coast Leadership Dialogue and grow it into a true catalyst for technology leadership between our two great nations at such a critical time in our collective histories,” he said.
In addition, Hancock has held positions on the Boards of the Starlight Children’s Foundation, Smart Services CRC, Invasive Animals CRC, New England Girls School, and the Internet Industry Association. Hancock is a member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors Technology and Innovation Panel.
He says throughout his forty-year career he has been dedicated to driving initiatives for the betterment of the research and education community, and always with the future in mind.
“I care very deeply about enabling outcomes that benefit future generations of Australians,” said Hancock.