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Moves towards statehood began with a public meeting in 1851 to consider separation of Queensland from New South Wales. As the push for separation gained momentum, Queen Victoria was approached to consider establishing a separate colony based at Moreton Bay. The Queen gave her approval and signed the Letters Patent on 6 June 1859. On the same day an Order-in-Council gave Queensland its own Constitution. Queensland became a self-governing colony with its own Governor, a nominated Legislative Council and an elected Legislative Assembly.
Now 6 June is celebrated by Queenslanders as the day when the new colony of Queensland was established.
With the word 'Separation' painted on its hull, the ship Clarence sailed into Brisbane on 10 July 1859, to be greeted by a jubilant crowd eagerly awaiting the news of separation. Clarence was welcomed with a 14-gun salute, a 'blue light' display and fireworks.
On 10 December 1859, Governor Bowen arrived in Brisbane to a civic reception in the Botanic Gardens. He officially marked the historic occasion of Separation by reading a proclamation from the verandah of the Deanery of St. John's Cathedral.
Queenslander of the Year
Since 1981, Queensland Day has been celebrated as the official birthday. Celebrations provide an opportunity to acknowledge the outstanding achievements of Queenslanders with "Queenslander of the Year", "Young Queenslander of the Year" and "Community Spirit" awards. The "Community Spirit" award was given to one of the finalists from the "Queenslander of the Year" or the "Young Queenslander of the Year" awards.
|Year||Queenslander of the Year||Young Queenslander of the Year||Community Spirit Award|
|2011||Dr Noel Hayman |
|2010||Dimity Dornan AM||Yassmin Abdel-Magied||Dr James Morton|
|2009||Sergeant Dimitrios (Jim) Bellos||Chiu-Hing Chan||Heather Nancarrow|
|2008||Graeme Wood||Homa Forotan||Karen Bartlett|
|2007||Professor Matthew Sanders||Lars Olsen||Jess Wellard, Alexandra Gasteen, Greg Nelson|
|2006||Professor Ian Frazer||Leisel Jones||Shenee Lea Geerin|
|2005||Dr Geoff Hill||Alen-Igor O'Hran|
|2004||Dr Chris Sarra||Leisl Packer|
|2003||Professor Alan Mackay-Sim||Alice Chang-Douglas|
|2002||John Eales AM||Danielle Begg|
|2001||Lloyd Hancock||Mark Farrell-Nikenbah|
|2000||Dr Aila Keto AO||James Moody|
|1999||Margot Appleyard||Petros Khalesirad|
|1998||Betty Byrne Henderson AM||Tiffany Dudman|
|1997||Cedric Johnson AM||Perry Cross|
|1996||Christina Yeomans OAM||Tarita Botsman and Michael Kasprowicz|
|1995||Dr Cherrell Hirst AO||Nicholas Gerathy|
|1994||Allan Border AO||Lana Higson|
|1993||Mary Lowe AM||John McColl and Kylie Buchanan|
|1992||Graham Jenkinson AM||Danae Sweetapple|
|1991||Leneen Forde AC||Roger Lord|
|1990||Dr Clem Jones AO||Aaron Maree|
|1989||Sister Angela Mary Doyle AO||Joanne Hein|
|1988||Sir Llewellyn Edwards AC|
|1987||Rev. Canon John Warby OAM|
|1986||Dr Russell Strong AL|
|1985||Iris Buntine OAM BEM|
|1984||Ron Grant OAM|
|1983||Sir Edward Williams KBE KCMG|
- "The Celebration of Queensland's Anniversary of Foundation". QLD Government. Retrieved 16 November 2010.
- Sykes, Emma (25 January 2011). "Queenslander of the Year 2011: Dr Noel Hayman". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 24 February 2015.