AUSTRALIA DAY - HONOURING THE ACHIEVERS - NEIL PERRY AM

Neil Perry at Rockpool Bar and Grill in Hunter Street, Sydney.
Neil Perry has been honoured for his commitment to fund-raising for charities and as a restaurateur and chef.

Esther Han

In every sense, Sydney chef Neil Perry has known success. His flagship restaurant Rockpool on George will celebrate its 24th birthday next month, Qantas' first- and business-class passengers have been treated to his dishes since 1997 and his cookbooks adorn thousands of shelves around Australia.

But the father of two daughters says he knows success is not simply a function of hard work, but also luck.

Mr Perry has been honoured for his commitment to fund-raising for charities and as a restaurateur and chef.

He dedicates this recognition to financier and friend David Coe, who died in Aspen, Colorado, last week.

"David helped me understand more and more that I should take my luck and make sure I shine those opportunities on not just myself and my family but on to the community," Mr Perry, 55, said. "I'm humbled." He has worked with the Starlight Children's Foundation for 21 years.

"To see children in the Starlight lounge, terminally ill or recovering from terrible accidents, recapturing their childhood with dignity and strength is incredible," he said.

Mr Perry has also supported flood relief events, Prostate Cancer Foundation, CanTeen and Mission Australia.