Congratulations, Hilary Manson PSM
Announced by the Governor-General His Excellency Sir Peter Cosgrove, the Queen's Birthday Honours 2019 included AGS's Hilary Manson who was awarded a Public Service Medal for 'outstanding public service to the long term protection of Australia's community interests as General Counsel.'
Hilary has had a dual role of providing high-level complex advice, and leading the in-house legal team, at the Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities. The advice that she has provided has been integral to the delivery of major infrastructure projects, including inland rail and the second Sydney airport, as well as programs that provide vital support for regional Australians, including the Building Better Regions Fund and the Regional Jobs and Investments Package.
She helped pioneer what is, today, a fairly widely used and understood model for the role of General Counsel to a Government department, but at the time of her secondment to the Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities in 2002, was not in wide use amongst Commonwealth agencies. The way in which she has performed this role has helped transform the delivery of legal support services across the Australian Public Service.
She provides consistently high-quality strategic advice that is focused on practical solutions and the delivery of the Department's outcomes. Her timely advice, having appropriate regard to proportionate risk management, is provided across the full spectrum of the Department's responsibilities, namely transport policy and regulation (aviation, maritime, motor vehicles), infrastructure funding and development, external territories, regional development and local government.
Her involvement in the highest levels of decision-making enables the Department and its ministers to draw on her vast knowledge and ensure that programs and policy are set on solid legal footing, with a keen eye towards the public interest.
The impact of Hilary's work has been significant and her advice and leadership within the Department supports government policy and programs that have a meaningful impact on all Australians.