The Honorary Consul of the Federal Republic of Germany, Mr Torsten Ketelsen and Mrs Mona Ketelsen, invited guests to celebrate the Day of German Unity with a reception on the 3rd October 2016 at The Government House Ballroom. The Day of German Unity is the national day of Germany commemorating the anniversary of German reunification in 1990. Her Excellency Dr Anna Prinz the Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany made her first official visit to Western Australia to attend the reception.
The occasion also celebrate 175 years of German Settlement in Western Australia with the official launch of Professor Dr Alexander Ludwig’s new book “Born in Germany – Re-Born in Western Australia” by Her Excellency the Hon Kerry Sanderson AC, Governor of Western Australia. The book details the inspirational stories from the first German migrant to settle in WA permanently in 1841 to the present day.
Mark Coughlan was the musical director and master of ceremonies for the evening which was enhanced by the musical performances of mezzo-soprano Caitlin Cassidy, flautist Jane Rutter accompanied by Mark Coughlan playing the piano.
The great surprise of the night for the unsuspecting Honorary Consul of Germany in WA, Mr Torsten Ketelsen, came from Her Excellency Dr Anna Prinz the Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany. She announced that the President of the Federal Government of Germany honoured Mr Torsten Ketelsen with The Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany, also known as the Federal Cross of Merit, presented to him by Her Excellency Dr Anna Prinz. The Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany is the only federal decoration of Germany. It is the highest tribute the Federal Republic of Germany can pay to individuals for services to the nation.
The night also highlighted the achievements of four Western Australian students who were awarded scholarships to study in Germany. The scholarships were awarded by Ms Pamela Millar the President of Scholarships for Australian-German Student Exchange (SAGSE). The four students; Ms Mia Palmer from Methodist Ladies College, Mr Yu-Jin Ham from Rossmoyne Senior High School, Ms Prajna Menon from Rossmoyne Senior High School and Ms Tiana Nelson from Kelmscott Senior High will travel to Germany on the scholarship for three months from December 2016 to March 2017.
The celebration was closed with a buffet dinner of German specialities and networking opportunity for all guests.