Attention: You are using an outdated browser, device or you do not have the latest version of JavaScript downloaded and so this website may not work as expected. Please download the latest software or switch device to avoid further issues.

News > College Life > Sir David Higgins Guest of Honour at Engineering Faculty Dinner

Sir David Higgins Guest of Honour at Engineering Faculty Dinner

Sir David Higgins was recently the guest of honour at the College’s Engineering Faculty Dinner.

Sir David is the current Chair of United Utilities Group, Chair of Gatwick Airport, and former Chief Executive of the London 2012 Summer Olympics Delivery Authority. Sir David resided at St John’s College between 1973-76 and holds a Bachelor of Civil Engineering from the University of Sydney and a Diploma from the Securities Institute.

Tony Sukkar AM, Professor Mark Scott AO, Sir David Higgins and John Coorey.

In attendance were:

Chancellor Belinda Hutchinson AC: Chancellor of the University of Sydney
Professor Mark Scott AO: Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the University of Sydney
The Hon Dominic Perrottet: Current Member for the seat of Epping and Former Premier of NSW
Professor Michael L’Estrange AO: Former Australian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, Former Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and alumnus of St John’s College
David Mortimer AO: Former Chair of Sydney Airports Corporation and Fellow of the University of Sydney Senate
Josephine Sukkar AM: Chair of the Australian Sports Commission
Tony Sukkar AM: Group Managing Director of Buildcorp
Dr Shane Geha: Adjunct Professor – Faculty of Engineering
Mr Mark Alcorn: Associate Director of Development of the Faculty of Engineering
Mr John Coorey: Chairman of the St John’s College Council

 Also in attendance was Mrs Rosalyn Higgins, wife of Sir David, as well as Mr Robert Higgins, who is the brother of Sir David and also a College alumnus, and Robert’s wife Mrs Jane Higgins.

The Hon Dominic Perrottet, Josephine Sukkar AM and Professor Mark Scott AO.

This dinner celebrated the College's long-standing connections with the engineering and business professions, and to encourage all our students to aspire to achievement in their chosen field.

Prof Michael L’Estrange AO.

Sir David was introduced by his good friend and fellow St John’s alumnus, Prof Michael L’Estrange AO who spoke of the profound impact Sir David’s leadership has had on cities, communities and colleagues alike.

Chancellor Belinda Hutchinson AC, Dr Mark Schembri and Sir David Higgins.

Sir David noted that there was much for St John's College students to aspire to and be proud of in the world of engineering, and that our students should never be afraid to take risks and turn towards a different direction.

Sir David was thanked by Chancellor of the University of Sydney Belinda Hutchinson AC, who delivered a very powerful vote of thanks, noting Sir David’s immense influence for positive change, and the strength of the University of Sydney community.

We are deeply grateful to Chancellor Hutchinson, and Vice-Chancellor Prof Scott for their presence, kind words, and their support of St John’s College, as we look forward to continued collaboration and achievement of positive outcomes for both St John’s College and the University of Sydney.

The College extends its gratitude to the numerous distinguished guests who graced the event and served as sources of inspiration for our students including our esteemed engineers, politicians, alumni, and industry leaders but especially to Sir David. 

Sir David Higgins Awarded Doctor of Engineering

The College is proud to announce that on 19 September 2023, the University of Sydney conferred the degree of Doctor of Engineering (Honoris Causa) to Sir David Higgins in the UK, in recognition of his contribution to the engineering profession over the past 40 years. 

The degree was personally awarded to Sir David by Chancellor Belinda Hutchinson AC in London and in the presence of Vice-Chancellor Prof Mark Scott AO. Chancellor Hutchinson highlighted the significant positive impact on industry and communities that Sir David’s leadership has had over several decades.

“Sir David’s contribution to the successful delivery of the Olympic Games in both Australia and the UK demonstrates his commitment to excellence and social and environmental progress. He notably delivered the 2012 Olympic Games infrastructure a year ahead of schedule and under budget, while prioritising sustainability measures including the use of solar panels on UK Olympic venues and compostable food packaging during the games. He achieved his objective of revitalising one of the lowest socioeconomic areas in London. 

This commitment extends to public transport, with the reform of UK Network Rail, the planning of the High Speed 2 (HS2) railway system which will initially link London to Birmingham and then Manchester and chairing Gatwick airport.”

On behalf of the St John’s College community, I congratulate Sir David on this significant achievement – recognition that is well-deserved for an individual who has positively impacted and uplifted the lives of so many throughout his career.

Dr Mark Schembri

Similar Stories

Students enjoy a day out at the Royal Easter Show More...

The College farewells one of its former Rectors. More...

The installation of Dr Mark Schembri as the 21st Rector of St John's College at the University of Sydney was a harmonious blend of ceremony, tradition… More...

Have your say!



10 Missenden Rd, Camperdown 
NSW 2006, Australia

Follow us on Social

This website is powered by