United Nations Public Service Day is celebrated on 23 June each year. Inaugurated in 2003, the event celebrates the value and virtue of public service to the community. It also honours contributions made to the cause of enhancing the role, prestige and visibility of public service. In recognition of the significance of this date, IPAA has established an oration, to be delivered each year by a person of great importance to progressing the value of public service.

The oration engages the broader public sector to reflect on and celebrate the critical role played by the public service and the institutional and individual integrity, resilience, and challenges in the service. We invite you to hear Her Excellency’s oration in this special event hosted by IPAA ACT and available below as a recording.

Frances Adamson Oration: Marking United Nations Public Service Day from IPAA ACT on Vimeo.

Learn about our speakers

Her Excellency the Honourable Frances Adamson AC

South Australia

Her Excellency the Honourable Frances Adamson AC is a proud sixth-generation South Australian.
She studied economics at the University of Adelaide while there becoming the first female captain of the rowing club in its 103-year history, and went on to join the Commonwealth Department of Foreign Affairs in 1985. She worked in Hong Kong during the early years of China’s reform and opening, eventually becoming Australia’s Ambassador to China from 2011-2015.

In 2016, Her Excellency was appointed head of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, pursuing Australia’s interests as world powers shifted and the COVID-19 pandemic took hold. She also led the department through a period of cultural change, encouraging more women into senior ranks.
She has also been International Adviser to the Prime Minister and Chief of Staff to the Foreign Minister and Defence Minister.

In June 2021, Her Excellency was made a Companion of the Order of Australia for eminent service to public administration through the advancement of Australia's diplomatic, trade and cultural interests, particularly with the People's Republic of China and the Indo-Pacific region, to innovative foreign policy development and high-level program delivery, and as the 36th Governor appointed in South Australia.

Steven kennedy

Dr Steven Kennedy PSM

Secretary to the Australian Treasury
The Treasury

Please contact IPAA ACT for further information

Professor Renée Leon PSM

Vice Chancellor and President
Charles Sturt University, Bathurst

Please contact IPAA ACT for further information

Deanne Allan

Director, Counter Fraud Policy and Evidence, Commonwealth Fraud Prevention Centre
Attorney-General’s Department

Please contact IPAA ACT for further information

Michelle Grattan AO

Chief Political Correspondent, Professional Fellow
The Conversation, University of Canberra

Please contact IPAA ACT for further information

Event brought to you by


Thursday, 23 June 2022

5:00pm - 6:00pm (ACST)
(5:30pm - 6:30pm (AEST))

Microsoft Teams Live-Stream

Free for virtual attendees
(please view the link below for further information on in-person attendance)