Australian yachtsman and environmental campaigner, Ian Kiernan, Dead at 78

Ian Bruce Carrick Kiernan was born on October 4, 1940, in Sydney and died on October 17, 2018.

He was an Australian yachtsman and environmental campaigner.

Ian was known for organizing the Clean Up Australia campaign and in 1993 a similar Clean Up the World operation which attracted participation from 30 million volunteers in 80 countries.

His parents were George Arthur and Leslie Katherine Kiernan.

He was educated at The Scots College in Sydney, The Armidale School in northern New South Wales, and the Sydney Technical College, where he trained as a builder.

He took part as a yachtsman, sailing competitively for more than 40 years and representing Australia at the Admiral’s, Southern Cross, Dunhill, Clipper, Kenwood and Trans-Pacific Cup competitions.

During 1986/87 Kiernan represented Australia in the BOC Challenge solo around-the-world yacht race.

Kiernan completed the race at 6th place out of a fleet of 25 yachts from 11 countries, setting an Australian record for a solo circumnavigation of the world.

In 1991, his efforts towards the environmental were recognised when the Australian Government awarded him the Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM).

He was awarded Australian of the Year in 1994.

During the ceremony he assisted the Premier of New South Wales John Fahey stopping a ‘pseudo assassination’ attempt on Charles, Prince of Wales.

During 1995, he was appointed an Officer (AO) of the Order of Australia.

Kiernan was the recipient of the UNEP Sasakawa Prize in 1998.

That particular prize is awarded every year to individuals with an established track record of achievement and the potential to make outstanding contributions to the protection and management of the environment consistent with UNEP’s policies and objectives.

Kiernan received the World Citizenship Award from the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts in 1999.

Ian Kiernan was awarded the Centenary Medal for “service to the Clean Up Australia Campaign and the Clean up the World Campaign” in 2001

During 2006 Kiernan received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Trust of Australia (NSW).

In the 2007 Reader’s Digest Most Trusted Poll voted Clean Up Australia as the country’s most trusted environmental charity and chairman Ian Kiernan AO as the fourth “most trustworthy” Australian.

That same poll Kiernan was ranked number three, in 2008

Kiernan was also the recipient of Toastmasters International Communications and Leadership Award, The Berger-Sullivan Tourism Award, the International Banksia Award, and the 1999 Building World Citizenship Award.

Ian Kiernan died at 78 years old due to cancer-related complications.