The University of Notre Dame Australia presented one of its longest serving staff members, Rev Dr Russell Hardiman, with the Distinguished Service Medal on Thursday, August 2, 2012.
The Distinguished Service Medal, which recognises staff for their exemplary service to Notre Dame, is one of the highest accolades awarded to staff by the University’s Vice Chancellor.
Dr Hardiman was presented with the special medal in recognition of his invaluable contribution to the School of Philosophy and Theology on the Fremantle Campus.
The University’s Vice Chancellor, Professor Celia Hammond, expressed her gratitude to Dr Hardiman for his contribution over the past 20 years.
“Russell Hardiman has been a true servant of the University since its early days, delivering liturgical and sacramental theology to our students,” Professor Hammond said.
“Through his work and devotion to the vision of a Catholic university in Western Australia, he has helped to shape the School’s academic curriculum.”
Born in Leonora, Western Australia, in 1943, Dr Hardiman was ordained to the priesthood in July 1966 and graduated in 1970 from The Pontifical Liturgical Institute Sant’ Anselmo (Rome) as the first Australian with a doctorate in liturgy.
His academic expertise saw him establish the journal, Pastoral Liturgy, to assist and encourage students of liturgy, clergy and pastoral workers to engage with, and learn about, the new liturgy after the Second Vatican Council.
The journal is now in its fifth decade of publication and is distributed both nationally and internationally.
A priest of the Diocese of Bunbury, Dr Hardiman served in the parishes of Boyup Brook, Gnowerengup-Tambelup, Donnybrook and Waroona.
He was the Archbishop’s nominee on the Perth Liturgy Committee, a Member and Vice Chairperson of the West Australian Liturgy Commission, and a long term consultant for the Australian Catholic Bishops’ National Liturgical Commission.
In 2003, he published an extensive history of the Catholic Church in Australia through the story of his own family titled: ‘From East to West you Gather a People’.
The work contains thousands of items from Dr Hardiman’s personal collection which document the history of liturgy and sacramental theology of the last 50 years.
Dr Hardiman was also instrumental in the establishment of a national ecumenical body of academics in liturgy – The Australian Academy of Liturgy – and was responsible for Notre Dame hosting the body’s national conference in 2005.