new chancellor

The ceremony to install the new Chancellor of Charles Darwin University this afternoon began with one minute’s silence to recognise the people who lost their lives in attacks at two Christchurch mosques last Friday.

As a diverse and multi-cultural community, CDU has many students, staff and stakeholders of the Islamic faith who have been deeply affected by the senseless events in Christchurch, New Zealand, CDU Vice-Chancellor Professor Simon Maddocks said.

The 250-strong gathering on Casuarina campus stood in silence to honour the scores of victims and their families at the start of the Investiture ceremony to install the Hon Paul Henderson AO as the fourth Chancellor of the university. The Chancellor leads the CDU Council, the university’s principal governing body. It is an honorary position that also has a key role in supporting the Vice-Chancellor, and is significant in many university ceremonies.

Mr Henderson, a former Chief Minister of the Northern Territory, begins his three-year term immediately.

The Administrator of the Northern Territory, Her Honour the Honourable Vicki O’Halloran AM, officiated at the ceremony as the role was transferred from Mr Neil Balnaves AO, who retired from the position in December 2018, to Mr Henderson.

The newly installed Chancellor was the Chief Minister of the Northern Territory for almost five years and was a member of the NT Legislative Assembly for 13 years during which time his portfolios included Education and Training, Business, Asian Relations and Trade, and Regional Development.

Professor Maddocks told the gathering that the vision Mr Henderson held for the Territory aligned well with CDU’s vision and place as the NT’s university.

“Paul Henderson has an unwavering commitment to the development of Northern Australia and to the social and economic prosperity of the NT. The university has a key role in achieving these aspirations,” Professor Maddocks said.

Mr Balnaves was acknowledged during the ceremony for his contributions to the university, particularly for his business expertise and for his philanthropic interest in Indigenous welfare and the arts.