Over his lifetime, Australian legal academic, Professor Emeritus Ron McCallum AO has built an impeccable reputation based on exceptional contribution to human rights, education, research and the community. As a teacher he is credited for inspiring many of his students to pursue distinguished careers in Australia and overseas.
Professor McCallum began his career in the Monash Faculty of Law where he worked from 1974 to 1993. In 1993 he became the first totally blind person to be appointed to a full professorship at an Australian university when he joined the University of Sydney.
As the foundation Professor in Industrial Law, Professor McCallum taught Administrative Law, Public Law and Labour Law. From 2002, he served five years as Dean of Law. He has also taught labour law at the Osgoode Hall Law School at York University, Ontario Canada, and at Duke University, North Carolina in the United States.
Professor McCallum is the Chair of the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and Chair of Radio for the Print Handicapped of New South Wales Co-operative. He is also one of two Deputy Chairs of Vision Australia and in 2008 was appointed as a member of the Federal Government’s National People with Disabilities and Carers Council.
In early 2003 the Australian Government awarded Professor McCallum a Centenary Medal for his role as a labour law scholar and for his role as a disabled citizen in our nation. In 2006 the Queen’s Birthday honours recognised Professor McCallum with an Officer in the Order of Australia for his services to tertiary education, for industrial relations advice to governments, for assistance to visually impaired persons and for social justice. In 2007 Professor McCallum received an Alumni Achievement Award from Queen's University Canada where he had undertaken postgraduate studies in law from 1972 to 1974.
In 2011 Professor McCallum was awarded the honour of Senior Australian for the Year. In the same year he was presented with a Making A Difference Award for his work in the areas of equal rights and social inclusion for persons with disabilities.
Since 2010 Professor McCallum has worked as a consultant for commercial law firm HWL Ebsworth Lawyers. He continues to write and publish extensively on labour law.
View Professor McCallum's profile video
View Professor McCallum's acceptance speech