Public Service Medal


The Public Service Medal is awarded to staff in the public sector twice a year, to coincide with the Australia Day and Queen's Birthday Honours Lists. A maximum of 100 medals can be awarded in Australia in any year, with 17 medals available to Victorians.

The Public Service Medal is awarded for service above and beyond the normal requirements of the position. The medal is not awarded for long service and it is not reserved for senior officers - all public sector employees at all levels are eligible for the award.

The nomination process is strictly confidential - nominees should not be informed of their nomination. Successful nominees may decline the award when approached by the Honours Secretariat if they wish.

Department nomination process

Members of the Teaching Service (principal class, teacher class and education support class) and VPS staff may all be nominated. The written support of a Regional Director or Executive Director is requested with the initial nomination.

The nomination needs to include an overview of the nominee's achievements and clear examples of distinguishing qualities that set the nominee apart from other people in similar roles. Nominations will also benefit from the following:

  • referee statements from a variety of sources, including statements from beyond the immediate work environment
  • evidence that the nominee's contribution has been over and above what might normally be expected of someone in this role
  • evidence that the nomination would be well received by the nominee's peers and by the wider community.

Further information

  1. Nominations are sought twice a year, by way of Departmental Circulars to school and corporate locations.
  2. The Public Service Medal nomination form is available in PDF or Word format at   
  3. Secretary endorsement will be sought for all submitted applications
  4. For further information refer contact details below.

Australia Day Honours 2018 Public Service Medal Recipients

Tony Bugden, Executive Director, People Division







Mr Tony Bugden

For outstanding public service to human resource management in the education sector in Victoria.

Tony Bugden joined the Commonwealth Public Service in 1974 and began at the Department in 986 as a projects manager, before progressing to manager and executive roles within the People Division.  Tony was commenced for his work overseeing every major school education human resources policy initiative in Victoria in the past 20 years.

Tony received recognition for his strength as a highly skilled problem-solver, and a brilliant negotiator who loves the challenge of working through complex problems.

Central to Tony's leadership is his passion for human resources and seeking opportunities to drive positive changes.

Queen's Birthday Honours 2016 Public Service Medal Recipients

Judy Rose, Regional Director, North East Victoria

 Ms Judy Rose

For outstanding public service through the improvement of educational outcomes for students in the North Eastern region of Victoria, particularly to those from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Judy Rose’s leadership in the Department as a principal and senior leader in the Hume Region has ensured that rural students receive the best quality education possible. The establishment of Flexible Learning Centres was a significant piece of the work with the centres offering alternative schooling options for young people who have experienced long-term disengagement. The centres form part of the North Eastern Rural Learning Network and the goal is to help young people re-enter the mainstream school system. The original Flexible Learning Centre was established in Wodonga and, building on this model, there are now centres in Benalla, Shepparton and Seymour.

A key feature of Judy Rose's leadership is her courage in facing adversity and her willingness to find innovative ways to solve enduring problems. Her capacity to inspire others and her capacity to collaborate to achieve outcomes is a significant contributor to her success as a leader.

Queen's Birthday Honours 2015 Public Service Medal Recipients

Susan Christophers, Executive Director, International Education Division

Mrs Susan Christophers

For outstanding public service to education in Victoria through policy making and leadership, including overseeing substantial growth in the international student program in Victorian Government schools.

Mrs Christophers has demonstrated exemplary leadership throughout 25 years of public service.  She has overseen significant growth in international school student numbers and sister school partnerships and led the development of several programs, including the Victorian Young Leaders to China Program and Victorian international teaching fellowship program.  These efforts have helped globalise Victorian education and established Victoria as a preferred destination for international students.

Mrs Christophers has served under eight successive state governments and has proven to be a highly strategic, reform minded public servant.

Robert Stephens, Deputy Regional Director, North Eastern Victoria Region

Mr Robert Stephens

For outstanding public service to the teaching profession in Victoria.

Bob Stephens' service to education in Victoria spans 49 years. He has held a range of positions, including as a classroom teacher, school principal, Assistant Regional Director, Deputy Regional Director, including some time as Acting Regional Director in the Department of Education.

Starting as a teacher of Mathematics and Chemistry, Bob has taught at many Victorian schools including Seymour High School, Cheltenham High School, Blackburn High School, Huntingdale High School and Hampton High School. He was Assistant Principal at Mordialloc Chelsea Secondary College and Principal at Patterson River Secondary College and Sandringham College.  His time as a teacher saw him focus on improving student outcomes, building the capacity of teachers in the schools in which he taught and inspiring students to strive for excellence in all aspects of their lives. Bob still regularly sees many students who he taught and is excited by the success that they have made of their lives.

In the last ten years, Bob has been a Senior Education Officer and Assistant Regional Director in Southern Metropolitan Region and more recently Deputy Regional Director - Provider Performance, Accountability and Improvement in North Eastern Victoria Region where he has continued to focus on improving student and school outcomes.  A key part of this work has been working with schools to improve outcomes for all students, particularly the more vulnerable in our schools.  Bob is currently doing some work with Seymour College and he enjoys being able to support the school where he started his teaching career.

Throughout his career, Bob has been an examiner and marker of VCE mathematics subjects, a position that he loves as he enjoys the interactions and conversations with fellow mathematicians.

Bob has worked with many fantastic teachers, educational support staff and regional, central office personnel and educational consultants throughout his career. He accepts the Public Service Medal on behalf of the wonderful people who have enriched his working life over the years and he thanks them for their invaluable contribution to education. Bob continues to fully enjoy his career due to the fact that he is able to initiate and implement many opportunities to improve education in Victoria and the lives of children and young people.

Contact Information

People and Culture

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