West Wimmera Shire will welcome Professor Debra Bateman as its Australia Day Ambassador for 2020.
Mayor Bruce Meyer said council was excited to welcome Professor Bateman to the shire this year.
"Professor Bateman is a passionate educator and community advocate and we are very fortunate to have her visit communities in the shire this Australia Day," he said.
Professor Bateman is currently the Dean of the College of Education, Psychology and Social Work at Flinders University in South Australia.
In this role she is responsible for leading the strategic development and growth of people, places and programs of study across Australia and also in rural, remote and international areas.
For her sustained commitment to outstanding educational leadership and innovation, Professor Bateman has received two national awards and a citation. Awards include Australian Teacher Educator of the Year and the Australian University Award for Teaching Excellence and Innovation.
Professor Bateman frequently acts as an advocate for young people and their families when access to schooling or other resources are challenged as a result of sexuality, disability or behaviour.
She is currently on the board of the LifeChanger Foundation and Kingswood College. She has previously served on the RMIT University board and the Victoria Police Blue Ribbon Foundation board, where she retains a life membership.
Cr Meyer said Professor Bateman's main areas of research included how young people think about their futures, along with innovations in education.
"She is highly motivated to make a difference in the world and in the lives of others," he said. "We are privileged to have such an accomplished and enthusiastic community contributor as our Australia Day Ambassador."
Professor Bateman will attend and speak at Australia Day celebrations at Edenhope and Harrow on Sunday 26 January 2019.
West Wimmera Shire Council will have five celebrations on Australia Day in 2020, with events at Dergholm, Edenhope, Goroke, Harrow and Kaniva.