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Order of Australia award recipients

Leila Forde, OAM, awarded January 2024


Speaker at the seminars, Leila Chirgwin Forde

Medal of the Order of Australia for service to community health










Margaret Grove, OAM, awarded June 2023

Margaret Grove OAM

Medal of the Order of Australia: For service to the community through a range of organisations.

Margaret has been involved at ABA for 40 years, in a variety of capacities, most recently as our President.  

She has volunteered as a Breastfeeding counsellor, as a steering committee member on several different committees, has led local groups, and remains a committed trainer and assessor. 

Margaret says “ABA groups have always been and continue to be an inclusive, safe and friendly space. I didn’t feel the need to compete with anyone. I just felt like I belonged. The other mums there could show and tell you about their experience, from newborn to toddler. It was and is a wonderful village of sharing and learning”. 

  • President, since 2018 and 2006-2008 
  • Director, since 2017 and 2001-2008 
  • Acting Executive Officer, 2019-2020. 
  • Member, Panel for Independent Assessment Validation of accredited courses, current 
  • Member, Steering committee, Certificate IV in Breastfeeding Education course, current 
  • Member, Steering committee and writing team, Diploma in Breastfeeding Management, current. 
  • Member, Steering committee, Course in Community Breastfeeding Mentoring, current 
  • Member, Parliamentary Inquiry into Breastfeeding leading to Australian National Breastfeeding Strategy, 2010-2015. 
  • Community Representative, Advisory Panel for the Marketing in Australia of Infant Formula, Department of Health and Ageing, 2009-2013. 
  • Director, Mothers Direct, 2003-2004 
  • Trainer and Assessor, since 1986. 
  • Volunteer Breastfeeding Counsellor, since 1983 

Rosalind (Ros) Escott, AM, awarded June 2023

Ros Escott

Member in the general division of the order of Australia for significant service to women’s health and the community. 

Ros began as a breastfeeding counsellor with ABA in 1987, training as an educator in 2008. She was made an Honorary Member in 2007 for her contribution nationally and internationally, including serving on the national board and national training team.  

Ros has an impressive track record of setting up both professional and volunteer education, which has ensured that many mothers have been able to successfully breastfeed their babies, all over the world.  

Ros continues to support mothers at local levels – with breast pumps for premature babies in intensive care. The impact of having this service available locally and quickly, cannot be underestimated. 

Ros says “I don’t do what I do for acknowledgement, so this was a huge surprise, but very nice. I had an international career working in this field, but I have never forgotten NMAA/ABA which gave me this start and became my family”.  

  • ABA Honorary Life member (since 2007) 

  • Company Director, NMAA Board (1990 to 1993) 

  • Breastfeeding educator (2008 to present)  

  • Breastfeeding counsellor (1987-2017) 

  • NMAA/ABA Member (1984 to present)  

  • Active in local group, region and branch (1985 to present) 

  • Active on Counselling phone roster/National Breastfeeding Helpline roster (1987 to 2021) 

  • ABA National Training Team – Learner Support Coordinator (2011 to 2021) 

  • Active as trainer and assessor – Tasmania Branch, Southern Region (2011 to 2021) 

  • ABA Southern Tasmanian Region, Treasurer (2015 to present)