Stephanie Copus-Campbell grew up in Alaska and fell in love with Papua New Guinea.
Apart from the climate, she finds the two places similar in their problems and delights. Both have isolated communities facing challenges.
For her work over 20 years in PNG, she has been made a Member of the Order of Australia.
"I think it's humbling," she said.
"It's a recognition of many, many people who work in partnership. I share this with many people."
From Alaska, she went to the University of California and to Cambridge University. She met an Australian and, at the age of 25, came and worked for the Australian Red Cross.
She worked for the Australian government's aid program and went to PNG in 2000. It was the start of her love affair with the country.
"I've been faithful ever since," she said.
Her love is for the land - "It's like walking through a National Geographic magazine every day" - but also for the people in their 800 different cultures.
She is usually based there but has been back in Canberra since July last year because of Covid.
She accepts PNG's problems are "challenging", particularly with the epidemic and the pressure it is putting on health services, "but for every problem, there is a solution".
In 20 years, the thrill hasn't waned: "I can still wake up and see the beauty of the country and its people."
- Departing DFAT boss among droves of women honoured
- Peta Credlin, the accidental political warrior, lands Queen's Birthday honour
- More than a game: Stuart's legacy honoured on the Queen's birthday
- Australians marvel at honours recipients Hemsworth, archbishop
- Canberra doctor recognised for sacrificing fees to build hospital
- Queen's Birthday Honours for Canberra scientists
- Down-to-earth scientist with a large impact earns AC
- AM for Harriet Elvin, champion of our 'creative city'
- OAM honour for league's legendary 'Brick with Eyes' prop
- 'I was part of a team': public service medals bring achievements into the limelight
- Gallantry award for corporal who led heroic rescue in 'extreme danger'
- Activist's non-linear journey reaps rewards
- Astronomer sees virus as small blip in the universe
- AM appointee calls for funding boost for drug and alcohol services
- Bombings' lessons for AFP analyst
- Record rate of women in Queen's honours
- Australians share in Queen's honours
- Leading melanoma researcher appointed AO
- Disaster recovery pioneer awarded OAM
- Tough but rewarding time as top woman cop
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content: