Your bequest will assist us to continue providing high quality affordable college accommodation for post-graduate students and researchers from all over the world.

Such an endowment will help to provide more funding, networking and career opportunities for graduates at all life stages.

Your generosity will allow us to preserve and grow a proud membership institution that is owned and run by its Members.

We want to continue to honour in perpetuity those, like you, who have supported our Union and our House through bequests.

If providing for our Association in your Will please submit the on-line Intent to Bequest form below.

Please feel free to contact the CEO/Head of College for a confidential discussion
on +61 3 9347 3428 or via email to

Dierdre Walsh

The first meeting in 1911
Dierdre Walsh, 2011


The Graduate House Society is grateful to those who have chosen to remember The Graduate Union and Graduate House in their will.

Mr William (Bill) Eveleigh Berry

Dr Thomas Ronald Albert Davey

Miss Barbara Anne Funder

Mrs Margaret Munro Hendy

Miss Stella Mary Langford

Dr Phillip Garth Law CBE AC

Miss Kathleen Margaret Peace Rankin

Mr Frank Leslie Stillwell OBE


Graduate House Society booklet



A booklet with information about the Graduate House Society and what you as a member gain by joining with others to sustain and grow our Union and our House.

Graduate House Society

The Graduate House Society recognises those who have chosen to remember The Graduate Union and Graduate House in their Will. All who make such a bequest are invited to become Members.

As a valued member of this Society you will be invited to an annual luncheon and other functions where the CEO/Head of College and Council Members will outline recent achievements and plans for the future.

The Graduate House Society will provide a forum to assist with the wording of your bequest and with amendments to your Will when there are changes in law and should your philanthropic preferences change.

Forty years ago, I stayed at Graduate House. I was new to Australia. You welcomed me and gave me a roof over my head, clean linen and good meals. You supported me as I established the foundations of a very successful career. I became part of important networks with graduates in Melbourne and across the world. Now, as I near the end of my career, I find it only fitting to thank Graduate House in my Will. I want others to experience what I experienced and to have the same opportunities.

Past Resident

Being part of the small graduate community here, I have been able to meet and foster friendships with people from different disciplines, from different walks of life and from countries that I had seen only on maps before. The Graduate Union nurtures graduates with awards. I am indeed grateful to be the recipient of the Graduate House Research Scholarship. This funding has helped me progress medical research that I believe will make a very real difference internationally.

Current Resident

Funding Areas

In making a bequest you are able to choose how to support our vision. As a member of the Graduate House Society you will be kept informed of the evolving strategic objectives and identified needs of the organisation in the years ahead. You will thus be well positioned to change your bequest at any time.

To provide support in the broadest way you might choose to direct your bequest to the Association’s charitable purposes of education and social good. Your bequest will thus be applied to the priority needs and strategies of our Union, our House and our Community at the time.

To provide support for major college (graduate House) construction projects envisaged in the Association’s ten-year Master Plan,

Your bequest could enhance our House by contributing to the maintenance and expansion of our properties. Many of the facilities enjoyed by Members and guests today are the result of the generosity of benefactors in the past.

Your endowment would be to support Residential Fellowships, the Graduate House Research Scholarships and Bursaries, and other initiatives envisaged in the ten-year G-Union Master Plan to assist students enter graduate programs, progress through their careers and contribute to our global society meaningfully.

Intent to Bequest

If you have decided to make a bequest to The Graduate Union and Graduate House in your will we would be grateful to know so that we can invite you to become a Member of the Graduate House Society. We hope to thank you during your lifetime in the manner that you would prefer. We hope also to understand your intentions for your bequest so that we can implement these intentions appropriately.

  • I confirm that I have provided a gift for The Graduate Union and Graduate House in my will and I would like my bequest to be directed to:
  • Yes, I would like to join the Graduate House Society because: (tick one or more options)
  • I would like to receive more information (tick one or more options):
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Dr Yuzo Baba

(1987 – 2017)

Member, 2015

Celebrating Professor Robert (Bob) Cattrall’s Order of Australia in Papa Gino’s restaurant (221 Lygon Street, Carlton) in June 2015 (from left to right: Professor Spas Kolev, Professor Robert Cattrall, Dr Burkhard Horstkotte, Dr Ivana Sramkova, Dr Yanlin Zhang, Mr Colin Specht, Ms Manda Ershad, Ms Chelsea Bassett, Mr Charles Croft, Mr Edward Nagul, Dr Raquel Mesquita, Dr Yuzo Baba, and Dr Ines Almeida)

The sad news that Dr Yuzo Baba (age 29) passed away on February 10 could not have been more unexpected and shattering. This is a terrible loss not only to his family, friends and colleagues but also to the Chemical Engineering community. Yuzo was a very talented young researcher with a highly promising academic career ahead of him. He graduated in 2010 with a Bachelor degree from Tokushima University and then completed his Masters (2012) and PhD (2015) degrees in Engineering at Kyushu University under the supervision of Professor Masahiro Goto. In 2012 Yuzo was awarded a Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) Fellowship for young scientists for a 6-month research visit to my laboratory, which took place in 2013 and resulted in a joint journal article. In 2015 he was also awarded a highly competitive 2-year JSPS Postdoctoral Fellowship to conduct research on polymer inclusion membranes in my laboratory, which he commenced in May 2015. In April 2016 Yuzo joined the Graduate School of Science and Technology of Tokushima University as Assistant Professor. During his short academic career Yuzo demonstrated his outstanding ability to conduct high quality research, which is reflected by his excellent publication record including 15 refereed journal articles, 3 patents and numerous conference presentations.

Because of his kindness, friendliness and readiness to help, Yuzo created many friendships in Graduate House, where he resided when in Melbourne, the School of Chemistry, and in the wider academic community. He will be sadly missed by all.

Professor Spas D. Kolev
School of Chemistry
The University of Melbourne

Mrs Patricia Eileen Balsamo

(1933 – 2015)

Member, 2008

We were deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Member Mrs Patricia Eileen Balsamo who passed away on the 1st November, 2015. Stylish, elegant, multilingual, academic, articulate and humane, Eileen – as she preferred to be called – was the epitome of a Member of this Association. Though a relative newcomer, joining in 2008, she soon became an active contributor to the Women’s Forum and a regular at lunch in our dining room with her husband Franco and their many friends. Notwithstanding her long illness and obviously increasing frailty, Eileen greeted all, young and old, with respect, kindness and a smile. Here at Graduate House, we shall miss our dear friend. We extend our deepest sympathies and condolences to Franco, as well as to her family and friends.

Dr (Edgar)Roger Banks

(1930 – 2018)

Member, 2017

Dr (Edgar) Roger Banks

Dr Roger Banks was the eldest of four children born to Raymond and Hilda Banks. He attended Camberwell South Primary School then Brighton Grammar, excelling as a Prefect, School Captain and Dux.

The talented student played sport and became a Scout and Signals Cadet, then his lifelong love of music began with violin lessons and he played in a recreational capacity into later life, transitioning to the cello in his early 50s.

Roger won a scholarship to the University of Melbourne, which gave him a cadetship with the Post Office, allowing him to work on the job and study. After two years he transferred to full-time study and graduated in 1953 with a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering with first-class honours.

Roger was involved in various line work in Western Victoria, Geelong to the Adelaide border and special tension work on wires in Bendigo. He wrote a paper on this subject and received a call to fix faults between Perth and Adelaide with the promise of, and eventual promotion from a Gr 1 engineer to a Gr 3 engineer.

In 1955, he won another scholarship for young engineers and sailed on the Orion to England to learn about the latest switching technologies. He convinced his boss at the time to allow him to visit five companies so he could collect a diverse range of information for future developments in Australia. He visited GEC, British Ericsson, STC, British Siemens, and Austel, spending three months with each.

In a heartfelt tribute from children Melissa and Jeremy, they recalled that in 1972, a long black car came to the house and took them to the Steam Ship Canberra bound for England. Roger was an executive for Plessey Telecommunications in Liverpool and had a picturesque existence in Heswall, a beautiful village with cobblestone roads and horses in paddocks.

Affectionately known as “The Man with the Fountain Pen”, he returned home with grand tales about flying in helicopters with icy cracked windscreens to emergency meetings in London.

Roger met the lovely Molly May Carmichael from West Derby Lancashire and they married in 1956, arriving back in Melbourne just after the 1956 Olympic games had finished.

Roger’s experience in England helped him assist the Post Office in choosing the L M Ericsson Cross Bar Switching System. He wrote an extensive paper on the subject published in the Telecommunications Journal of Australia in 1961.

He was also involved with the International Telegraph and Telephone Consultative Committee (CCITT) and appointed chairman of the working party for National Automatic Networks, sending him around the world for regular meetings. Roger continued to chair the working party meetings for CCITT until his resignation in July 1968. The assemblies were held in various international locations including Montreal, Geneva, New York, Stockholm, Munich and also at home in Melbourne.

In New York in 1964, Roger presented his plenary report along with a handbook called the Manual of National Automatic Networks.

According to Roger, due to the split of the Australian postal service and the newly formed Telecom, Australia needed him. At Telecom, Roger was Head of Marketing and by 1980, the Director of Corporate Strategy. Very much the visionary before the Internet, he talked about digital switching systems, and the future being in data storage, data transfer, computers and communications.

He retired in 1988 and continued to live life to the full as:
A member of the Athenaeum Club
A member of the Rumour Tank
A member of the Brighton Grammar School Top-Enders
An RACV councillor from 1992-2001
President of the RACV Club from 1990-1993
A board member of VicRoads from 1992-2005
Board member for Monash University Accident Research Centre – 2005
Honorary Chairman of the Board for Melbourne University Engineering Foundation from 1997-2007
He was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by the University of Melbourne.
As a mentor, he brought colleagues and students to Graduate House to support their career development.

Roger’s son, Jeremy Banks, lovingly recalled his father as his “greatest hero” and: “A gentleman who used a fountain pen, wore a suit and carried a briefcase. In his career and on various boards there are numerous examples of tough decisions he made that others would avoid due to self-interest, lack of vision or not wanting to be unpopular. His motivation was always the greater good for all in the situation, and his logic was flawless.”

Around 2005, his mother Molly was suffering from dementia. “She was comfortable at home and struggled with change or spontaneity. Molly liked to have dad with her. He progressively dropped his external commitments and they became increasingly isolated including from family. Their saving grace was a daily outing to Sandy and Andy’s coffee shop in Hampton, that interaction was a light in the storm for a socialite like Roger. He loved people and talking. Roger stood by Molly and would not entertain any discussion that he may need help caring for her, in his eyes she was recovering and all would be fine.”

In 2015, Roger was hospitalised for a knee operation and Molly, home alone wandered off towards Hampton but got lost. “That afternoon we got a call asking if Molly was related to us. Molly was admitted to an aged-care facility where she remains today happily reliving memories from her childhood in India.”

“The Man with the Fountain Pen lay down to rest and switched on his radio and bedside lamp for the last time.”

Daughter Melissa Banks recalled: “Roger was excellent at public speaking as well as speaking in general; he used to say he could talk under wet cement. Dad loved his food it was no secret, I believe this goes way back. He has told me about the many errands he would carry out for Hilda (his mother), picking up various food items including freshly baked bread. Dad couldn’t resist the smell of fresh bread and on more than one occasion ate the centre out of the bread on his way home.”

“It is hard for me to sum up in words all the various qualities that made up our Dad’s character. Roger was a loving, caring, supportive, funny, persistent, hard-working, dedicated, positive, calm, reliable and selfless person, the list could go on and on.”

Jeremy concluded: “We do miss you greatly. We do love you forever.”

We are grateful to Melissa Banks and Jeremy Banks for this touching tribute.

Mr Ian Raymond Barrah

(1934 – 2013)

Member, 1960

Mr Ian Raymond Barrah

The Graduate Union regrets to inform members that Ian Barrah, former Councillor and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of The Graduate Union passed away, aged 79 years, on the 8th June, 2013. Ian was a long standing contributor to The University of Melbourne and to The Graduate Union. He taught at both tertiary and secondary education levels, including in Mathematics at Camberwell High School. He is remembered by his students as a dedicated, encouraging and caring teacher and mentor. The Graduate Union extends its condolences to Ian’s family and friends.

The following tribute from The University of Melbourne to Mr Ian Barrah was published in the The Age newspaper:


Members of the University of Melbourne community record with great sadness the passing of our former colleague Ian Barrah.

Ian Barrah is remembered with affection as a highly valued, long-serving member of the University administration. Starting his career in 1961, his various roles later included that of Deputy Registrar and Registrar (Academic) and following retirement he also served as Warden of Graduate House. Greatly respected by his colleagues, he particularly directed his attention to the support and welfare of students and to the causes of the wider University community.

Deepest sympathy is extended to Suzanne Barrah and members of the Barrah family., published 13th June 2013

Dr Simon Berry

(1947 – 2012)

Member, 1970

Dr Simon Berry

We are saddened to learn of the sudden death of Dr Simon Berry on the 5th December, 2012. Simon was the only son of the late Vera Berry and her husband, our long-serving sometime Warden, Bill Berry. A vet who graduated from The University of Melbourne in 1970, Dr Berry was a keen skier, an avid traveller and supporter of the Melbourne Football Club and a reader of World War I history, especially of that relating to the Western Front. The Council, members and staff of The Graduate Union extend our sympathy to his wife Jenny, and to his children and grandchildren.

The following tribute to Dr Simon Berry was published in the The Age newspaper:


Died after a short illness 5th December aged 65 years. Beloved husband of Jenny. Devoted father to Ed and Liz, father-in-law to Allison and Evan. Proud grandfather of Ash and Felix. Loving brother to Kate Preston. He will be sadly missed., published 6th Dec 2012

The Honourable Frank Hortin Callaway


(1945 – 2015)

Member, 1969

The Honourable Frank Hortin Callaway RFD QC

Frank Callaway was educated at Melbourne Church of England Grammar School. Frank obtained a first class Honours Law degree and then a Masters of Laws from The University of Melbourne where he served as editor of the Melbourne University Law Review.

Mr Callaway began his career as a solicitor with Mallesons, and became a partner at the age of only 29 years. Signing the Bar Roll in 1977, Frank was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1987 and a foundation member of the Court of Appeal Justice at the Supreme Court of Victoria, from 1995 until his retirement in 2007. In 2005 he addressed a New South Wales Bar Association conference in Sydney on statutory interpretation He was a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and an Honorary Fellow of St Paul’s College in the University of Sydney.

In retirement, as a Southby Visiting Fellow, he established the Philosophy Club at Geelong Grammar School and was referred to fondly as “an intellectual Timbertop”. He also introduced a “Positive Education” program at St Paul’s College at the University of Sydney, of which he was an Honorary Academic Fellow.

The following tribute to Mr Callaway, was published in The Age newspaper:

A deeply principled, kind and generous man with a love of classics, philosophy and theology, he devoted his life and brilliant mind to the law. A servant of the Victorian Community, first as a solicitor and partner at Mallesons, and as Junior and Queen’s Counsel at the Victorian Bar, and then as a foundation Judge of Appeal whose contribution to the criminal law in particular will be a lasting legacy in this country and beyond. In retirement, he devoted his time on a voluntary basis to teaching and inspiring school and university students in the areas of philosophy and positive psychology.

A man of great knowledge, wisdom and goodness, he will be greatly missed by his many friends and colleagues in the Victorian legal community and in the many other spheres of life and the community to which he contributed.
Beloved son of William (dec.) and Ivy (dec.)
A friend to so many who were truly privileged to know him., published 6th July 2015

Dr Alexandra Cameron MBE

(1910 – 2017)

Member, 1971

Dr Alexandra Esther Cameron MBE

We are saddened by the passing of Dr Alexandra Cameron, a remarkable woman who lived until the age of 107 and dedicated her lifetime to music education.

Dr Alexandra Cameron was awarded the esteemed accolade of an MBE but was affectionately known by her nearest and dearest as “Cam”.

Born in the Darling Downs, Queensland, she was educated at Hilda’s School, Southport, then studied at the Elder Conservatorium of Music in Adelaide, followed by the University of Melbourne. She undertook postgraduate study with the noted pianist and composer, Harold Craxton, in London.

A trailblazing woman of her time, Dr Cameron served in the Australian Imperial Force (AIF) in New Guinea during the Second World War, where she reached the rank of Lieutenant. Afterwards, Melbourne beckoned and she arrived with no money or no job but heard that the Education Department was looking for music teachers. This was music to her ears and thus, in 1952 her career with the Department began as “Miss Cameron”.

When she was a Music Method lecturer at the University of Melbourne in 1963, she was revered as a “supportive and inspiring teacher” and devoted mentor who always made time for her students. She was the first woman appointed as Inspector of Music for secondary schools in 1966.

In 1979, she was awarded an MBE for outstanding service to Music Education and Administration. In 2010, the Institute of Public Administration added her name to the Honour Roll of Women Legends of Service Delivery, for her exceptional contribution to Victoria.

Graduate House Councillor Mary Kelleher delivered a thoughtful tribute to Dr Cameron, saying: “When I commenced teaching, I always felt I could ring ‘Cam’ for advice, as she was a great mentor.”

One of Dr Cameron’s early initiatives was establishing the first Music Placement schools in Melbourne and students who were interested in becoming music teachers with the Education Department could audition to attend University or Oakleigh High Schools.

Due to its success, the Music Placement program expanded to five schools: University, Macleod, Blackburn, McKinnon and Hamilton High Schools. Due to her influential role in education, instrumental music was growing in schools and she set up Saturday morning classes similar to those in England.

Cr Kelleher said: “The early classes were held at UHS until the program grew to such an extent with orchestras, concert bands and choirs, bigger venues had to be found. Concerts were held in the Melbourne Town Hall for massed choirs conducted by Miss Cameron and others, and later overseas trips to Europe and Japan were organized, and bands from Japanese schools visited Melbourne.”

Dr Cameron initially retired at age 60 but continued to teach for another 10 years. Cr Kelleher recalled: “At 70, she said: “I thought I had done everything, now I can retire.” But that soon changed when three boys called at her home and asked for her help to form a string orchestra.

Dr Cameron told them they would need a conductor and they chose Harry Hutchins. And that’s how the Chamber Strings of Melbourne was created in 1980.

Energetic and tireless when she reached 100, Dr Cameron arranged a concert at the Melbourne Town Hall to celebrate the Chamber Strings of Melbourne’s 30th birthday and her final retirement. Forever the academic, she then wrote a book on the history of the Chamber Strings called A Story Culled from Happy Memories.

Dr Cameron remained spirited at the age of 103, as Cr Kelleher recalled: “Cam received a visit from students from my year. During the visit, she offered to sign copies of her new book, if we wished to purchase one for $25.”

RMIT University hailed Dr Cameron’s remarkable legacy in music education and awarded her its first Doctor of Education Honoris Causa in 1996. Her publications in the 1950s and 1960s were used extensively in schools for many years.

“She was extremely generous financially and in the support she continued to give to young musicians up until her death at 107. The University is proud of its long association with such a remarkable woman.”

Musicians and friends of the Chamber Strings of Melbourne hailed Dr Cameron’s “generosity and commitment to music education” and founding an orchestra that provided vital experience to young Victorians and “brought joy to all who have heard their performances” in Australia and overseas.

The Melbourne Youth Orchestras said Dr Cameron changed the face of music education in Victoria. In 1967, she helped establish the Secondary Schools Concert Committee, now Melbourne Youth Orchestras, to provide ensemble music performance opportunities.

Dr Cameron oversaw the introduction of the State Secondary Schools Orchestra in 1970, which was renamed Melbourne Youth Orchestra in 1971. The Melbourne Holiday Music Camp was established in 1972, and by 1974, the Melbourne Youth Symphonic Band, the Melbourne Youth Choir, and the Percy Grainger Youth Orchestra had all formed.

The Melbourne Youth Orchestras said: “The rapid expansion of the program, and its enduring success, are testament to Dr Cameron’s devotion to furthering opportunities for young musicians. She had boundless energy and worked tirelessly to provide inspirational musical and cultural opportunities for young musicians. Nothing was impossible – rather, she knew only ‘degrees of impossibility’. She always believed that young people respond to challenge and leadership, and this she gave.

In its 50th anniversary year, the organization continues to share her commitment to excellence and passion for enriching young lives through the power of music.

Mr Paul Clement Carlin

(1940 – 2017)

Member, 2005

Mr Paul Clement Carlin

We extend our deepest condolences to Paul Carlin’s family, friends and colleagues over the loss of such a treasured man.

We are all richer for knowing Paul Carlin, a devoted husband, father, grandfather, brother and friend. As an educator, he taught not only in the corridors of academia but in his loving home and within the halls of Graduate House and Rotary.

At Paul’s service in April at St Carthage’s in Parkville, his son Jerome delivered a heartfelt eulogy on behalf of the family. Paul’s mantra was to be a giver, not a receiver, with no complaint and his life passions centered around a “diverse wheel of life” based on family, education, the church, Rotary and music.

“Dad, never enjoyed the limelight but we are all here to salute, celebrate and share his life journey,” Jerome said.

Describing Paul as a man of integrity, compassion, simplicity and love, Jerome said that in his father’s “own quiet, gentle way” he imparted one of the greatest lessons in life: “How we walk with the broken speaks louder than how we sit with the great.”

Paul’s sister, Lorenda Gracey, recalled their joyous and playful childhood in North Melbourne with the “best parents in the world” – Bonnie and Clem.

Paul attended St Michael’s Primary School and completed secondary school at St Joseph’s College, both in North Melbourne.

He underwent teacher training at the Melbourne Teachers’ College then gained a Bachelor of Education from Deakin University and a Master of Education from the University of Melbourne.

Beginning his teaching career in Mortlake, a rural town in south-west Victoria, Paul subsequently held teaching positions in the Police Academy and in various primary schools.

Paul became a leading contributor and researcher on educational policy, leadership and governance in the global culture, teacher development and school improvement and globalisation. He was most recently Research Officer with the Flagship Research Centre for Catholic Educational Leadership, Australian Catholic University (Melbourne Campus). Prior to this he was Senior Education Officer, Catholic Education Office, Melbourne (1999-2001), and Project Director at the Australian Principals’ Centre, University of Melbourne (1997-1998).

Growing up in the inner-city, it was only natural that Paul would become an avid supporter of the North Melbourne Football Club and create happy memories splashing about at the North Melbourne baths.

Lorenda said Paul was always singing at home and in school choirs in his unique and memorable style. “Our family was always attending concerts that Paul was singing in and we would sit and giggle at Paul because as he sang, his head would bounce around in time to the music.”

In the rhythm of Paul’s rich life, he believed music inspires, unites, consoles and stimulates. Artists guaranteed to stir his soul included Perry Como, Neil Diamond, Carole King, Simon & Garfunkel, Joan Baez, The Proms, Leonard Bernstein and Leonard Cohen.

Paul was such an efficient and thoughtful man that he organized aspects of his own funeral right up to the music. Lorenda recalled that before his death, he told her: “Sit down, I want to talk to you. I want a mass at St Carthage’s and I want Michael Elligate to say it. And then don’t bother bringing everyone back to your place. They can all walk down to Naughton’s pub but make sure you let everyone know that it is two-hour parking around there.” That was Paul, forever considerate.

Paul’s erudite mind and intelligent conversation were a blessing for Graduate House since he joined in 2005 and he was equally valued and respected at the Rotary Club of Carlton after becoming a member in 2002.

John Elligate, Paul’s friend and fellow Rotarian, said at the memorial service that Paul provided outstanding and committed service across a wide range of portfolios for 15 dedicated years. He was elected President of the Rotary Club of Carlton in 2009-2010, and in 2015, he was awarded the ultimate accolade, a Paul Harris Fellow for outstanding service to Rotary.

“His professionalism, dedication, loyalty and positivity was respected by all Rotarians as well as his network of friends that he developed and nurtured until his passing,” John said.

John was proud that the Rotary family stood united with Paul until his death and funeral. John said it was “very special” that his brother, Fr Michael Elligate, an ex-president and current member of the Rotary Club of Carlton, was the celebrant at Paul’s service.

The Carlin family was deeply touched when the Rotary Club of Carlton agreed to its suggestion to acknowledge Paul’s legacy by renaming the Outstanding Leadership Award as The Rotary Club of Carlton Paul Carlin Outstanding Leadership Award.

It is fitting that we reflect on a quote by Canadian scholar Thomas B. Greenfield that Paul laminated and carried in his wallet until his death.

Education is a deeply mysterious process. We do not understand well how it works, but we know ~ almost by faith ~ that it does.

Education does nothing less than shape the human spirit.

Those who educate must evoke and use the greatest and deepest of the human powers ~ the power to choose.

In education, both the teacher and the student learn. They learn to choose and take responsibility for their choices.

T.B. Greenfield, 1984

Mrs Joan Haywood Chambers

(1930 – 2016)

Member, 1953

Mrs Joan Haywood Chambers

We extend our condolences to the family of Joan Heywood Chambers and everyone who knew her as a dedicated teacher, politician and campaigner for Ballarat.

Joan Heywood Chambers was born Joan Heywood Murray in Elsternwick to parents James McNab Murray and Annie Hale Shaw.

Her distinguished career in education was nurtured at Ormond State School and Tintern Church of England Girls Grammar School. Joan’s quest for higher education was realised at the University of Melbourne where she received a Bachelor of Arts in 1950 and Diploma of Education in 1951.

Her teaching career included appointments at Kyabram High School in 1952, Hampton High School in 1953, Mortlake High School from 1968-77 and Ballarat High School from 1978-79 and 1982-1990.

Eyeing a career in politics, Joan joined the Mortlake branch of the Liberal Party in 1969 and was elected Member of the Legislative Assembly for the seat of Ballarat South in 1979. The ambitious go-getter was the first woman to stand for the seat.

In the Victorian Parliament, she served on the Subordinate Legislation Committee in 1979 and the Public Review Committee from 1980-82. She suffered defeat at the 1982 election but was not deterred and tried to win another seat in the Victorian Parliament. Joan unsuccessfully sought pre-selection for Warrnambool in 1983 and ran again for Ballarat South in 1988, losing narrowly and taking the result to the Court of Disputed Returns.

Then in 1992 she stood as an Independent candidate in the Legislative Assembly seat of Ballarat West.

Joan is remembered as a passionate campaigner and advocate for Ballarat, particularly the retention of Uniting Churches in congregation ownership.

The Courier reported her “determined opposition” to the Uniting Church Synod’s planned fire sale of historic properties in 2013 to address a $36 million debt it had incurred through the collapse of its school Acacia College.

The proposed sale of St Andrew’s in Sturt Street and the Pleasant Street Uniting Church caused “enormous concern” for their congregations.

“We have a beautiful church and a beautiful congregation,” Joan said in the Courier at the time of the sale.

After threatening to approach the then Attorney-General Robert Clark and Premier Denis Napthine to assess if the sales would be legal, the Uniting Church backed down.

Joan’s successor in the seat of Ballarat South, Frank Sheehan, paid tribute to a strong competitor who was committed to her ideals.

“She was the first woman to stand for Ballarat South, which gives some indication of her willingness to work hard,” Mr Sheehan said in the Courier.

Joan’s community involvement included serving on the Ballarat Regional and Alcohol Dependence Association and the Ballarat Emergency Accommodation Committee. She was also a member of the Mathematical Association of Victoria.

As a dedicated Liberal Party stalwart, Joan held numerous positions including secretary of the Alfredton branch, a member of the federal electorate council for the Division of Wannon, and a member of the state executive.

The Liberal Party of Australia’s Ballarat Conference remembered her as a woman of conviction: “Joan was a strong and effective member of the Liberal Party community in Ballarat. A friend to all and a persuasive activist at all times. Strong in her life, in her faith, and in her political beliefs. She lived and argued passionately and we will miss her. A life courageously lived.”

The Ballarat identity’s community-minded altruism was recognized by her close-knit Probus family. “The members, past and present, of the Ballarat West Probus Club express their heartfelt collective sadness upon the passing of a loved and respected foundation member and past president of the club.”

Family and friends reading her death notice in the paper were touched to find a “final word” from Joan: “I would like to include my thanks to God for his many blessings, love, guidance, support and forgiveness that I received in life, and for the faith to get me through the bad times, and also to thank my many friends in Probus, Church, exercises and many others for their fun, love and support over many years.

“And finally my thanks go to my children, their wives and my grandchildren for all their support, pleasure and love – I was greatly blessed.”

Mr John (Jack) William Clarke


(1921 – 2016)

Member, 1964

Mr John (Jack) William Clarke OAM

Life Member of The Graduate Union, Jack Clarke OAM aged 95 years passed away peacefully on the 13th of December, 2016. The following are extracts from the Queen’s College website vale for their former Vice-Master.

Jack Clarke will be remembered for his extraordinary term as Vice-Master of Queen’s College from 1964 to 1988, and, above all, for his people skills and his deep psychological insight in guiding the lives of young people and serving the College community in an amazingly wide variety of ways.

Born in 1921 in Sheffield, Tasmania, Jack was the son of a Methodist minister. When his family moved to Melbourne, he attended Wesley College. After leaving school and working in a bank for two years, he enlisted in 1941 and served first with the Australian Army and then the British Army for a period of five years, ending his service with the rank of Captain. Subsequently, he enrolled at The University of Melbourne, was a non-resident student at Queen’s College and gained an Arts degree and diplomas in Psychology, Social Work and Education. From 1955 to 1963 he took on a variety of positions in these disciplines, before being appointed Vice-Master of Queen’s in 1964.

With the appointment in 1966 of a new Master, Dr Owen Parnaby, a legendary partnership shaped the next two decades. Jack’s primary focus was on the residents, first men only, then from 1973 onwards both men and women. Known for truly caring about the welfare and wellbeing of the residents, Jack was a man of integrity and high standards who believed in the power of goodness. His influence on the lives of generations of residents is immeasurable and explains the unmatched respect and love that he inspired across the entire college community.

During retirement, Jack served as Acting Master for eight months in 1992/3 and provided temporary leadership also for four other Colleges. Shortly following his election as a Fellow of the College, Jack was awarded a medal in the Order of Australia in 1990 for his service to youth and to the community. For many, including those of The Graduate Union, Jack’s death is said to mark the passing of an era.

Professor Richard (Dick) Cotton

(1940 – 2015)

Member, 1966

Professor Richard (Dick) Cotton

Dick completed a Bachelor of Agricultural Science at The University of Melbourne before gaining a PhD and a DSc. The photograph on the left was from the April 1966 issue of the Melbourne Graduate when Dick, a new resident at Graduate House, was captioned as Mr R.G.H Cotton, 24, B.Agr.Sc. PhD candidate for research in bacteriological enzymology, Department of Microbiology. Awarded a Fulbright Travelling Fellowship in 1972 and a Queen Elizabeth II Fellowship in 1973, he worked in paediatric and genetic research and became the foundation Deputy Director of the Murdoch Institute. Professor Cotton initiated the Human Variome Project in Melbourne in 2006. A world-renowned specialist in genetic variation, he was fundamental in the establishment and development of both the Human Genome Organization Mutation Database Initiative (HUGO-MDI) and the now globally accepted Human Genome Variation Society (HGVS) and led these organisations for many years.

The following tribute to Professor Cotton was posted in the HSGA website on 15th June 2015 (

It is with great sadness that we note the passing of Professor Richard G.H. Cotton BAgSc PhD DSc AM, who passed away peacefully on Saturday following a major stroke last week. Dick is well remembered for his role, together with Professor David Danks, in founding The Murdoch Institute in 1986, and serving as its Deputy Director until 1995, when he founded the Mutation Research Institute at St Vincent’s Hospital.

Dick had a long and distinguished career as both an innovative researcher and a driver of action towards preventing and treating genetic disorders and birth defects. In his post-doctoral research in Cesar Milstein’s laboratory in Cambridge, Dick laid the practical and theoretical foundation for the development of monoclonal antibodies, for which Milstein subsequently won a Nobel Prize in 1984.

Back in Australia, his work was fundamental to discovering the genes underlying phenylketonuria. He developed the chemical cleavage and enzyme cleavage mutation detection methods and encouraged the development of “Mutation Detection” as a distinct field of endeavour in genetics. He founded the Human Mutation journal, initiated the biennial Mutation Detection Conferences, and founded the Human Genome Variation Society. With the support of WHO, UNESCO, OECD, the European Commission, CDC and March of Dimes, this led to the Human Variome Project being established in Melbourne in 2006.

As the Scientific Director of the HVP he has led the world in developing ways to collect, curate, interpret and share information on the genetic changes that underlie both inherited and complex disease. Our thoughts are with Dick’s wife, Dr Elizabeth Smibert, and family.

Mr Leonard Joseph Coysh

(1943 – 2014)

Member, 2011

Mr Leonard Joseph Coysh

Mr Leonard Joseph Coysh died on the 11th June, 2014. He will be greatly missed and remembered by our staff. A Member of our Association of graduates since 2011, Mr Coysh was seen regularly at Graduate House with his business partners, David Logan and Keith Ryall, for meetings and executive recruitment interviews.

He was appointed as a Teaching Fellow at Monash University following his Master’s degree in the late 1960s, specialising in Industrial Relations and Economics. Len and Toni married in 1967 while he was working at Monash. During this period he was a regular media commentator on federal and state government annual budgets and economic policies. He became a friend of Bob Hawke (Prime Minister of Australia, 1983-1991) through his interest in industrial relations when Bob presided over the Australian Council of Trade Unions in the 1970s.

In 1970, Len left academia to commence his career as a trade union official, joining the Australian Federation of Airline Pilots as its research officer and over the next 16 years rising to lead the Union as its Executive Director. In 1977, Len was elected to Brighton Council and remained a councillor for six years becoming Mayor for the 1982/1983 term. From 1979 to 1985, he headed up the industrial relations division of the Victorian Football League Players’ Association. Mr Coysh was recruited to Ansett in 1988 by Sir Peter Abeles to work as a senior human resource and industrial relations executive. By 1995, he had joined Slade Partners, an executive recruitment firm where he worked until 2006. In 1999, Len and his son Jarrod purchased a farm at Whitehead’s Creek in North Central Victoria which became an important part of family life for the extended Coysh family. From 2010 to 2013, he was founding director of the successful Coysh Logan Ryall Health Services Executive Search firm with co-directors David Logan and Keith Ryall.

Len graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) degree from The University of Melbourne in 1965 and with a Master of Economics degree from Monash University in 1969. He was a member of the Melbourne Cricket Club and a keen supporter of the Bombers (also known as Essendon Football Club).

Additional tributes for Mr Len Coysh:

COYSH Leonard Joseph 17.11.1943 – 11.6.2014 Passed away suddenly surrounded by his beloved wife Toni, and his children Jarrod, Michelle and Lisa-Marie. Adoring Pa to Hugh, Imogen, Liam, Aidan, Declan, Finlay and Holly. Loving father-in-law to Jackie, Mark, John and Rod. Brother of Joan. Rest in Peace., published 13th June, 2014

COYSH. Len. Farewell to an authentic and unique friend, through both good and challenging times. Len – you are a legend who will be sadly missed. Our deepest sympathies to Toni, Jarrod, Michelle, Lisa-Marie and families. Keith Ryall and Gabrielle Butler., published 14th June, 2014

COYSH. Leonard. Len was one of life’s real characters who made a significant contribution to our company over 10 years. His “warts and all” approach be missed. All at Slade Partners. Condolences to the family., published 14th June, 2014

Dr James Joseph (Jim) Cross

(1937 – 2017)

Member, 1966

Dr James Joseph (Jim) Cross

We mourn the loss of Jim Cross, an internationally renowned mathematics scholar with a remarkable proficiency for languages who was passionate about mathematical history.

James Cross, known to all as Jim, was born in Melbourne, the eldest of three sons of railway worker Frederick James Cross and his wife Monica (nee Moloney). Born at home in Cecil Street, Yarraville, it was natural that Jim would become a passionate supporter of the Footscray Football Club, aka the Bulldogs.

Jim was educated at St Augustine’s Primary School, Yarraville, and Christian Brothers College, North Melbourne, before spending five years in the novitiate and the study of philosophy and biblical languages in a Catholic religious order, the Franciscans.

Impressed by Jim’s brilliance in logic and mathematics, his superiors counselled him to pursue his love of mathematics instead of taking vows to enter the Franciscan order. This life-changing decision shaped his brilliant academic career and Jim commenced his studies at the University of Melbourne in 1959, completing a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in 1962 and a Bachelor of Science (Honours) in 1966. While studying for the latter degree he somehow found time to teach secondary school in 1963 at St Augustine’s, Yarraville, and from 1964 to 1966 to lecture mathematics at the Secondary Teachers’ College.

His encounter in Melbourne with visiting American mathematician Clifford Truesdell, an influential and charismatic figure in the then rapidly developing field of rational mechanics, led to an opportunity to pursue further studies. He spent six months studying in Delft, Holland, then the United States beckoned, initially at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, where he completed a Master of Engineering Science.

Jim’s drive for higher education lead him to move to Rice University, in Houston, Texas, where he completed a PhD in 1971 under the supervision of C.C. Wang, with whom he published two joint papers on elastic shells and membranes in 1977. During his time in America, Jim became acquainted with many of the leading lights of the field.

Instead of pursuing postdoctoral work abroad, Jim returned to Australia after his PhD studies to take up a short-term lecturing position in mathematics at the University of Melbourne, bringing with him his wife Emilia (nee Filisone), known to her friends as Lia.

Lia and Jim had met as students in Melbourne in 1966 and married in Baltimore in 1969. After several renewals of his short-term lecturing position, and completing a Graduate Diploma in Education in 1974 along the way, Jim gained a continuing position at the start of 1977, and was promoted to senior lecturer in 1987.

Jim was lauded for his work with an award from the Applied Mechanics Reviews (AMR) “in recognition of more than 10 years of devoted and distinguished contribution as a reviewer for AMR”. He reviewed items especially in Russian, but also Italian and French and other languages.

Jim retired in 2000 on his 65th birthday but remained active as a scholar and also tutored and taught at a private college, North Shore Coaching College, where he contributed to the development of the curriculum and teaching materials, even revamping their mathematics syllabus. After his retirement he continued an association with the then Department of Mathematics and Statistics as a Senior Fellow until 31 December 2004.

During his studies in the United States, Jim became proficient in modern areas of pure mathematics such as algebraic topology and differential geometry. These topics were part of the Truesdell approach to studying elasticity. Jim was highly influential in bringing these subjects into the curriculum at Melbourne.

University of Melbourne mathematicians Professor Barry Hughes and Professor Hyam Rubinstein paid tribute to how Jim expended enormous energy in his teaching and his commitment was legendary. “Jim wrote wonderful notes, giving students a taste for the historical development of important mathematical ideas, reflecting his deep interest in the history of mathematics.”

Most of Jim’s scholarly work from his return to Melbourne was related to the history of mathematics in the United Kingdom and Europe in the first half of the 19th century and in the broader cultural context in which iconic mathematicians from that time worked.

Professor Hughes noted that Jim had the academic profile of a broad scholar, rather than a narrow expert. “He wrote a number of excellent reviews of scholarly books and also contributed significantly to scientific biographies. His other published output was small and under-represented both his intellectual depth and his contributions to Australian science and mathematics.”

His studies in mathematical history were frequently assisted by his astonishing ability at acquiring an excellent working knowledge of additional languages, which by the time of his death certainly embraced Latin, Dutch, French, Russian, German, Italian and Hebrew, although with characteristic modesty he claimed only to “speak to survival level and sometimes above in Dutch, German and French”. But Professor Hughes said that sadly, this came at a cost.

“The time spent in developing this level of expertise, and his extensive involvement with several colleagues in consulting work on the schedules of state and national sporting competitions, including for a period the Australian Football League, delayed progress on his intended magnum opus on the lives of the mathematician Johann Peter Gustav Lejeune Dirichlet and his wife Rebecka, the sister of the composer Felix Mendelssohn.”

Jim spent a lengthy period in Germany in 2016 gathering what he hoped would be final information in Berlin and Gottingen, but his project was incomplete when tragically, he suffered a massive heart attack on Christmas Eve in 2016 after returning home from celebrating his 47th wedding anniversary. He did not recover.

Jim and Lia chose to have no children, but Jim is survived by Lia, Jim’s younger brothers Gerard and Michael, and many nephews and nieces. Professor Hughes said: “It is a matter of great regret that so much of what Jim had discovered remains unpublished, but he will be fondly remembered not only by local colleagues and former students, but by a global network of scholars, with whom he remained in contact.”

We kindly thank Lia Cross, Professor Barry Hughes and Professor Hyam Rubinstein for contributing to this tribute.

Dr Eva Gizella Eden


(1924 – 2014)

Member, 1964

Dr Eva Gizella Eden AM

The Graduate Union extends deepest condolences to the family of Dr Eva Gizella Eden AM who passed away on the 7th July, 2014.

The following is an excerpt from Eva’s obituary by Olive Hamilton (Life Member of The Graduate Union) and Dr Damian Powell (Principal of Janet Clarke Hall) which was published in the 14th July, 2014 edition of The Age newspaper.

Eva Eden will be remembered as a gifted scientist and educational administrator who devoted much of her life to public service. In 1964 she attained her preeminent appointment as Principal of Janet Clarke Hall within The University of Melbourne, guiding the College through two decades of unparalleled change.

She was born in Hungary but moved to England in 1938 where she entered the University of Cambridge on an Agricultural Research Council Grant. She received her B.A., M.A., and Ph.D from that university between 1946 and 1950. Cambridge offered Eva her further experience of residential life as a student of Girton College.

In 1951, Eva immigrated to Australia to accept a lectureship in Biochemistry at The University of Sydney. She taught in various departments including Science, Medicine, Dentistry, Veterinary Science, Agricultural Science and Pharmacy, and became a Fulbright Scholar at The University of Rochester in 1957. From 1958 to 1963, Eva was Vice-Principal of the Women’s College in Sydney and Warden of St Catherine’s College in Western Australia before moving to Melbourne to take up the Principalship of Janet Clarke Hall, a position she held for 21 years.

Eva’s years of College leadership were balanced by voluntary service to a range of educational bodies including Firbank Grammar, Toorak College and as Chairman of the Association of Independent Schools of Victoria. She was President of the peak body of Australian Residential Colleges and the Australian College of Educators, and served on The Melbourne University Council from 1972 to 1975. Eva was Victorian President of the Australian Federation of University Women and Chairman of the Women in Management Group at the Australian Institute of Management. In 1975, the State Government appointed her to Chair the Victorian Status of Women Committee, leading to Victoria’s first Equal Opportunity Legislation.

Eva was a deeply private person. Wishing to define herself in terms of ability rather than gender, she was a Soroptimist, a member of the global organisation that aims to offer women and girls social and economic empowerment. She had the gift of synaesthesia, seeing words and numbers in colour. She took immense pleasure in later life from her association with The Melbourne University alumni walking group, on which she served as Secretary and Treasurer. In 1986, The University of Melbourne recognised Eva’s contribution to education with the Doctor of Laws honoris causa. The citation notes the respect in which she was held ‘in bodies concerned with educational policies and standards’. It praised ‘that thorough acquaintance with the facts and a sharpness of perception of the issues at stake in all that she undertakes, qualities which have made her a valued colleague and leader in many enterprises’. That same year she was made a Member of the Order of Australia for services to education.

Despite this extraordinary list of attainments, it was for her service as Principal of Janet Clarke Hall that Eva will be best remembered. Eva Eden was nationally prominent in an age in which women were typically underrepresented in senior leadership positions. A serious scholar and gifted administrator, she was a loving servant to education, and to Janet Clarke Hall.

Mr Frank Ford

(1927 – 2016)

Member, 1950

Mr Frank Ford

We are saddened to learn from Mrs Olwen Ford about the death of her husband on 12th July, 2016. Frank Ford became a Life Member of The Graduate Union in 1950 and last visited Graduate House for the 2013 AGM and Dinner. Mrs Ford said that Frank was proud to be a graduate of the University of Melbourne and valued his membership of The Graduate Union very much. Mr and Mrs Ford have donated regularly to the Scholarship and William Berry Wing Funds.

The following is an extract from the 15th July, 2016 edition of the Star Weekly:

In Memory: A tribute to Frank Ford, a Sunshine resident for over half a century.

Frank was born on 17th April, 1927. He was a teacher, lover of God and history, heritage activist, and Sunshine resident for over half a century. He died aged 89 years. Frank grew up in Ballarat on a farm at Mt Blowhard. The second of five children, he attended Mt Blowhard State School and then Ballarat High School. At 17 he became a trainee teacher with his first class at Macarthur St, Ballarat after only three days of induction. After graduation he had postings at Mt Beauty, Tallangatta and Bright.

Frank then went to study at the London School of Economics, University of London, and it was there he met Olwen. They married in London in 1960 and he convinced her to move to Australia. In that same year, Olwen and Frank settled in Sunshine, with Frank commencing as senior teacher at the new Sunshine West High School. He helped found that school, using rented church buildings before moving to teach at Sunshine High School, where he remained until 1972. The following year Frank took a post as lecturer at Burwood Teachers College, working there for the next two decades.

In all those years he continued to live in Sunshine, travelling to Burwood over the Westgate Bridge each day. Frank and Olwen raised five children. Their family now includes four grandchildren. Retirement was no rest for Frank and he was involved in many activities, especially in heritage issues and in the work of the Sunshine and District Historical Society. He spoke out strongly against the proposed introduction of poker machines and against the proposed demolition of the Bulk Store, on the Harvester Works site, even appearing (briefly) on television and the metropolitan press regarding the importance of saving the Bulk Store (now part of the Visy Cares Hub).

His faith was very important to him. He was an active member of St Mark’s Anglican, now Holy Apostles Church, Sunshine and Braybrook, and of the Victorian Branch of the Prayer Book Society of Australia. He was committed to family, near and far. He was an active and well-loved member of his local community and will be missed deeply.

Sourced 3rd April, 2017 from

Ms Barbara Anne Funder

(1930 – 2016)

Member, 1977

Ms Barbara Anne Funder

Honorary Life Member Barbara Anne Funder passed away on Tuesday, 6th September, 2016. Barbara was integral to the establishment and development of Graduate House – our graduate residential college and meeting place – as well as to the sustainability and growth of The Graduate Union – our international collegium of graduates.

Life Member, Heather Kudeviita, began her long association and friendship with Barbara early in the 1960s when the college opened its doors to residents (1962). Heather, who later became a Trustee, along with Barbara, of The William Berry Post-Graduate College Trust, remembers Barbara as a beautiful and welcoming young woman. “I found her very friendly when I was a new Member of The Graduate Union, and when I came to any function at Graduate House either she or Bill Berry would take me under their wings and introduce me to people,” said Mrs Kudeviita. “I thought she had a very good manner for making new Members welcome. That’s very important,” she added.

Heather said Barbara was essential to Mr Berry. “She had all the gentleness,” she added. Barbara and Bill would attend graduation ceremonies at Wilson Hall and hand out pamphlets to the recent graduates. This direct approach at every ceremony led to The Graduate Union, at its peak, having around 6,000 Members. “Barbara was a vibrant and sociable woman who took great care in making everyone feel welcome,” said Mrs Kudeviita. She was well-loved by everyone for her effervescence. Heather recalls being sent flowers after Barbara had died. The note attached included the words, ‘flowers in memory of Barbara, her bubbly personality, her hats and her friendship’. “That really does sum her up,” said Life Member Elizabeth Carvosso who had also known Barbara since the early 1960s. “She was always very friendly. I just knew Barbara as someone who was quite organised, who was always pleasant, and a sociable person,” said Elizabeth. Heather, Elizabeth and another longterm friend and Life Member Betty Keay all agreed that their collective fondest memories of Barbara are the colourful hats that she would wear and her affection for the past. “She was an old soul,” says Heather. “She always referred to herself as the last of the luddites,” she added.

Heather visited Barbara in hospital two or three times a week during the last few months. Though Barbara was often asleep, Heather’s last conversation with Barbara, just a few days before her death, is one of her warmest memories. “The last time I saw her we had a lovely little talk about the good old days. She even chuckled a couple of times, and it was really nice,” said Heather. “I knew instinctly that this might be our last conversation and it felt like a warm and just way to end.”

What would Barbara have liked to have seen for the future of the Graduate Union?
“I think continuing to expand would have been her vision for the future,” said Elizabeth. “She fully supported the acquisition of the now central wing, and the ensuing developments also on the south side to more than double the number of residential rooms for graduates.” “Besides seeing that the Monthly Luncheons continue, Barbara would like very much to see the dreams and vision of William Berry continue” said Heather, “particularly through the continuation of The William Berry Post-Graduate College Trust.”

Barbara’s loyalty to The Graduate Union was unfailing, and upon her retirement in 1985 she continued to attend events, her last being the Thank You Donors Luncheon in August of 2015. Heather said that the things that struck her about Barbara were her dedication and devotion to the ‘Union’ and the ‘House’ and her happiness with her life.

Dr Kerry Bennett, CEO and Head of College of Graduate House, said that Barbara will be remembered as the ‘founding mother’ of our Graduate House. “She was warm, genuine, gregarious and engaging. Her passion for our Association was infectious. Her blue eyes, cheeky smile, quick wit and extraordinary memory about every Member, resident and historical event will be sorely missed, as will her kindness and friendship,” she said.

Born in Melbourne, Barbara was the only child of Mr Thomas Ellis and Mrs Anne Margaret Funder. She attended Kildara College Malvern. Upon attaining Leaving Certificate (now the year prior to VCE) she worked at the British Trade Commission as a secretary for five years and then became an air hostess with Ansett Airways for two years.

Barbara’s first contact with The University of Melbourne was as a secretary for three years in the Audiovisual Aids Department. She was then recruited to International House, owned and operated by The University of Melbourne, as secretary to the Warden. After one year at this college she moved on to work as a secretary to an architect for about six months. Her subsequent return to the university sector would become a lifetime involvement and dedication.

In the January of 1962 Barbara began work as the office secretary at Graduate House. In time, her role quickly became very much wider and intertwined with that of William ‘Bill’ Berry. In 1966, Bill appointed her as Assistant Secretary-Warden. In addition to her secretarial duties she was involved with public relations work for The Graduate Union, a role that came very naturally to her. She arranged social activities for both the residents and the non-residents including house parties and outings, barbecues and lunches and dinners at weekends. This introduced many international scholars to Australian hospitality. The oldest continuous activity conducted by The Graduate Union is the Monthly Luncheon. It was not until 1975 that the luncheons moved to the dining room at Graduate House. Before this time, Barbara was in charge of organising the luncheons at the Victoria Coffee Palace in Little Collins Street. She prepared the guest lists and assisted with the speaker contacts and helped host these events.

The opening of the Johnston Library in 1971 was one of the most significant events in the history of The Graduate Union and in her later years Barbara often expressed the view that the Johnston Library should never be altered. “It is the place where I really feel in College” she reflected. According to Barbara, the purchasing of Kidd’s Warehouse was a big challenge in 1974. Despite the lack of enthusiasm from the Council (governing body) at that time about the proposal, the Secretary-Warden was not deterred. He pursued his idea and told the councillors that the University was also keen on the building. He said “I know the University people who are interested … if the Council does not decide to purchase the building, I will take the John Danks people to see the Vice-Chancellor tomorrow morning so at least they will buy the site.” Fortunately, the Council agreed to the acquisition. The rest is history!

For Barbara, her biggest highlight whilst employed was the affiliation of The Union and her beloved Graduate House as the 11th College of The University of Melbourne in 1972, and as the only graduate-only college residence. She noted that the University Statute envisaged a college of graduates having both Members and Members in-residence, and as hosting many postgraduate scholars who have been predominantly doctoral or master’s degree candidates including many distinguished overseas academic visitors.

When William Berry retired in December 1984 after 36 years, Barbara was appointed as the Acting Secretary-Warden for six months until her retirement in June of 1985. In 1987, William Berry told Barbara of his intention to stand for the Graduate Council and suggested that she also nominate. In the event, they were both elected. Miss Funder was elected for a term of one year to fill the balance of the term of a former councillor who had resigned. In 1988 she was re-elected for a term of three years until 1991.

When Bill Berry died in 1999, he left $100,000 to be administered by the Past Graduates and Postgraduates Society (PGPS) and the further sum of $20,000 to pay for the administration of this Trust. The Trust was renamed the William Berry Post-Graduate College Trust in 1999. In 2004, the PGPS was dissolved and Barbara Funder and Heather Kudeviita were appointed as Trustees. Together they have since applied funds from the Trust to the maintenance and refurbishment of the William Berry Wing of terraces.

Barbara continued her connection with The Graduate Union till her death. In addition to comanaging the Trust, she assisted with mail-outs, attended all AGMs and was seen at most dinners and luncheons. Her personal involvement is an important part of our history. She devoted her life to what she saw as the best interests of The Graduate Union during a period of great change and development. She made many friends.

At the 101st Annual General Meeting in 2013, on being awarded Honorary Life Membership, Barbara expressed a feeling of warmth and gratitude on receiving this honour “for simply being a part of the progress of a place that I have loved for all these years.” Over her many years with this Association, Barbara made a special place for herself in our hearts. We salute and thank her for her extraordinary, personal and lifetime contribution to The Graduate Union of the University of Melbourne.

Dr John Francis Garland

(1934 – 2015)

Member, 1962

Dr John Francis Garland

Our deepest condolences are extended to the family and friends of Dr John Garland, and particularly to his wife, Life Member Mrs Janice Elizabeth Garland.

Rasied in Surrey Hills, the second son of Thomas and Mary Garland, John attended St Colman’s before completing his secondary education at Parade College in 1951. At school he was known as a great footballer and a champion swimmer. Gaining his medical degree from The University of Melbourne and becoming a Member of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists,

Dr Garland spent a large part of his career practicing in psychiatry at The Melbourne Clinic which he joined in 1982. As explained by Br. Francis Irenaeus McCarthy of Parade College, who had encouraged him to pursue that career, John was to be applauded for what he had done in easing a lot of troubled minds.

Laurie Hudson, John’s lifelong friend of almost 70 years, described John as ‘clever, thoughtful and friendly; loyal, very understanding and tolerant’, traits definitely made evident during his many visits to Graduate House where he was always warmly received and popular amongst our Members.

John was a Hawks (Hawthorn Football Club) supporter and a member of the Rotary Club of Richmond which has acknowledged his contribution to club activities and his wonderful sense of humour.

Dying suddenly at the age of 81 years, John is survived by his much loved wife and Life Member Janice Garland (née Peeler), who for many years practised as an anaesthetist. John was a great man unreservedly and is sadly missed by us all here at Graduate House.

Dr Robert William Gibson

(1931 – 2014)

Member, 1961

Dr Robert William Gibson

Dr Robert William Gibson died on the 28th July, 2014 at the age of 83 years. Bob joined as a Member of The Graduate Union in 1961 and was elected to the Graduate Council (The Graduate Union’s governing body) in 1996. His longstanding contribution and dedication to The Graduate Union was recognised through the conferring of an Honorary Life Membership in 2006. He remained on Council for sixteen years until 2012, holding the position of Vice-President from 1999 to 2011.

Dr Gibson was awarded a prestigious life membership of the AFAANZ (Accounting and Finance Association of Australia and New Zealand) at the AFAANZ annual conference in Sydney in July, 2008 for his exceptional contribution to accounting education and research in Australia. He served on the Board of AFAANZ from 1972 to 1975, and as President of AAANZ (Accounting Association of Australia and New Zealand) from 1973 to 1974, the first President of the Association to be appointed from a College of Advanced Education. He served also on the AHSIG (Accounting History Special Interest Group), both as Chairman and as an academic leader, and also as co-editor with Barrie O’Keefe of the Accounting History Newsletter. A selection of the contributions which appeared in the Accounting History Newsletter under Dr Gibson’s co-editorship and in the initial series of Accounting History during his editorship were reproduced in an anthology, that was published in 1996 in his honour entitled Accounting History Newsletter, 1980 – 1989 and Accounting History, 1989 – 1994: A Tribute to Robert William Gibson.

A prolific author in accounting and financial reporting, Dr Gibson’s works included: The Case for Interim Reports by Australian Public Companies: An Account and Analysis of a Press Dialogue, Department of Accounting, The University of Melbourne (1965); The Valuation of Stock and Its Significance in Accounting, University of Melbourne Extension Committee (1966); Disclosure by Australian companies, Melbourne University Press (1971); Accounting for Monetary Items Under CCA, Deakin University (1980); and Two Centuries of Australian Accountants, Academy of Accounting Historians (1988).

Dr Gibson held a Master of Commerce and a doctorate. He was a lecturer at The University of Melbourne and on staff at the Gordon Institute of Technology before this became the Geelong campus of Deakin University whereby he became employed in the School of Management and rose to the position of Associate Professor. He established his legacy at this campus through the Robert W Gibson Prizes for the best students in the Accounting and Society and the Financial Modelling courses.

Robert worked tirelessly for his family and his local community. He was a member of the Christian College Geelong Board and Chairman of the College Finance Committee for 22 years. A longstanding member of the Freemasons, he was Treasurer for 20 years of the Acacia Lodge of Geelong and for 25 years of the Geelong United Mark Master Masons, as well as the organist of the Geelong Royal Ark Mariner Lodge and Auditor of the Geelong Masonic Centre Inc. and the Uniting Church.

The following tribute to Dr Gibson from this family, was published in The Age newspaper:

GIBSON, Robert William. Aged 83 years. A peaceful passage earlier than expected. Partner to Wendy for 60 years. Father of Keryn (dec), Malcolm, Catriona, Heather and Duncan and their partners, Ross, Marie, Ross, Colin and Frances. Proud Grandfather of Andrew, William, Matilda (dec), James, Genevieve, Cameron, Liam, Kieran, Indigo and Campbell. A man of integrity and faith, with a passion for justice and a brilliant mind., published 30th July, 2014

Mr Gordon David Maurice Goldberg

(1938 – 2015)

Member, 1960

Mr Gordon David Maurice Goldberg

Gordon became a Life Member in 1960, graduating from The University of Melbourne in 1962 with his LLB. He worked with his father, Maurice Goldberg, at Goldberg and Window Solicitors in Richmond and became known as a ‘colourful figure’ who rode to Courts all over Melbourne on an ancient bicycle and in a three-piece suit. He later became a Reader in Law at Buckingham University where he taught Banking, Constitutional and Administrative Law, Contracts, an Introduction to Legal Studies, Private International Law, Sale of Goods and Trusts. He was also Master of Moots (Mooting is for students to present a legal matter against opposing counsel and before a judge in simulated court conditions) until his retirement in 2003 – he is pictured in 2004 above left at a reunion – after which he settled in Perth. Our deepest condolences are extended to his wife Kerry and their family.

Ms Phyllis Ann Grave

(1932 – 2016)

Member, 1984

Ms Phyllis Ann Grave

We are saddened to hear about the death of Phyllis Ann Grave on the 22nd December, 2016.

Phyllis Ann Grave was born in 1932. Better known as Ann to all our Members, she was a very active contributor and was seen regularly at all our major events. After her secondary school education, Ann pursued a Dress Design Diploma at Melbourne Technical College (now RMIT). Her career in that field did not take off because of few opportunities at that time.

Ann married at aged 22, and was fortunate to be able to pursue her passions of dressmaking and painting. She became a Member of The Graduate Union in 1984 just after having been conferred a Bachelor of Arts degree from The University of Melbourne. In recent years, Ann had pursued her interests in travel, sharing with us in the December 2015 issue of The Melbourne Graduate, stories about her wonderful European trip.

Staff remember Ann as petite, elegant and a friendly person with a cheerful smile. She was a volunteer at the monthly mailout for many years, and came to the dining room regularly, bringing her many friends along as guests. Ann’s last visit to Graduate House was on 2nd December, 2016, at the Chair’s Cocktail Party.

Staff member Shirley shared a heartfelt moment in which she had a very happy chat with Ann at the new reception desk, just before helping her into a taxi home. Little did she know that this would be her last conversation with Ann. Rest in peace, dear Ann.

Dr Chester Murray Robin Gray

(1933 – 2015)

Member, 1983

Robin (as he preferred to be named) Gray attended Caulfield Grammar from 1941 to 1951, to later become a member of the teaching staff (1968 to 1985). In his final year as a student, he was School Captain and Dux of the School. Robin was the President of the Caulfield Grammarians’ Association 1980 to 1981 as well as Worshipful Master of the Caulfield Grammarians’ Lodge for two consecutive years.

Dr Gray received a doctorate in Educational Psychology from Monash University (his thesis being entitled Explanations that Enhance Learning in Science), a Master of Education from The University of Melbourne, as well as a Diploma in Mathematics and another in Applied Science from Curtin University. With particular interests in science education and in researching the teacher/student interaction, he assisted in the establishment of an annual program for the Department of Genetics to teach seven to nine year olds. Dr Gray became a Fellow of The Royal Institution (in the United Kingdom) and a Member of the Australian College of Educators, The Royal Australian Chemical Institute and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Dr Janet Guthrie

(1942 – 2017)

Member, 1963

Dr Janet Guthrie

We mourn the loss of Dr Janet Guthrie and remember her as a noted academic, researcher and women’s health pioneer.

Janet was born in Melbourne to Mary and Jack Hasker and excelled in academia as a leader in the understanding of women’s health in midlife. In addition to her academic achievements, she was an international traveller and balanced her work life with her love of golf.

Janet’s academic life started at Lauriston Girls’ School in 1946 and she completed a Bachelor of Science at the University of Melbourne in 1963. Working as a researcher at the Clinical Research Unit at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute with Sir Ian Wood and later Dr Ian Mackay, she was a trailblazer in the new field of autoimmune disease and published research on the identification of antibodies.

After obtaining a cultural education by travelling through Europe, Janet worked at the Baker Medical Research Institute at the Alfred Hospital and attained her Master of Science in 1967, studying the factors surrounding contractility of cardiac muscle.

While working as a teacher at Monash University’s Department of Botany and Zoology in 1973, she completed a Diploma of Education. Starting off as a tutor and then advancing to lecturer at the Lincoln Institute, which later became La Trobe University, Janet taught in the Department of Human Biosciences. She shared her knowledge and wisdom with students studying nursing, physiotherapy and occupational therapy.

Janet was a valued member of staff at Lincoln and La Trobe University for 17 happy and fulfilling years, making lifelong friends who will miss her brilliance.

Undertaking study leave in 1986, she worked at the Murdoch Institute at the Children’s Hospital with Professor David Danks on copper metabolism. During another period of study leave in 1991, she worked at the Key Centre for Women’s Health at the University of Melbourne with Professor Lorraine Dennerstein, who was studying the health of women in midlife.

Between 1991 and 1993, Janet took annual trips to teach nurses in Hong Kong. From 1993 to 1996, she was a respected member of the Lauriston School Council, giving back to the community that nurtured her intellect and quest for higher education. A highlight was the school’s decision to establish the Howqua campus in the Victorian high country so Year 9 students could participate in a 12-month academic, pastoral and outdoor program.

Working with Professor Dennerstein was integral to the next phase of Janet’s career. In 1994 she commenced a PhD and left La Trobe to become project director of the Melbourne Women’s Midlife Health Project. This landmark study involved interviewing 2000 middle-aged women and following the experiences of 500 as they transitioned through menopause.

The subject matter was crucial due to concerns about the long-term health effects of Hormone Replacement Therapy but there was very little data to help understand the risks or explore alternative therapies.

The project enabled Janet to travel the world from 1991 until 2006 to speak at conferences and collaborate with investigators in the same field. She shared her expertise with professionals in the United States, Japan, New Zealand, Stockholm, Korea, Istanbul, Amsterdam, Berlin and Vietnam.

Janet was grateful for the rewarding experience and the encouragement she received from Professor Dennerstein. As a leader in women’s health, Janet completed her PhD from the University of Melbourne in 1988 on “Bone density and the menopause in Australian-born women”.

When the word “retirement” entered Janet’s vocabulary and she left the Women’s Health program, she began volunteering with the Commonwealth Games Organising Committee for Volunteers in 2005, then at the Prahran Mission in 2014.

She loved sport as much as academia and was a keen golfer on the course and inside the clubhouse. Despite her demanding work schedule, she always found the time to play and even lead the Metropolitan Golf Club, the renowned “Sandbelt” course in Oakleigh South.

Janet was vice-captain from 2007 to 2008 and captain from 2009 to 2010. To honour her legacy, a celebration of her life was held at the Metropolitan Golf Club on February 2.

The Lauriston Girls’ School publication Lauriston Life paid tribute to their former student: “Janet had a very full and rewarding life, achieving much with little fuss. She found a great balance between pursuing her academic and research career, spending time with family and friends, and finding the time to commit to her hobbies like travel and playing golf.”

Janet will be missed by the Lauriston school community and everyone at Graduate House.

Dr John Keith Henderson AO

(1923 – 2017)

Member, 1965

We are saddened by the passing of neurosurgeon John Keith Henderson and pay tribute to his unique contribution to medicine.

John Keith Henderson, AO, was a noted neurosurgeon and known as Keith to the family, friends and colleagues whose lives were touched by his brilliance.

Keith was born in Perth and moved to Melbourne in 1940 to study medicine at the University of Melbourne.

After graduating in 1945, he became a resident medical officer at St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne and spent two years as Frank Morgan’s registrar in the neurosurgical unit.

Keith’s career was shaped by an encounter with Arthur Schuller, an Austrian Jewish refugee who arrived in Melbourne in 1940 as a radiologist. Arthur did much of the early work in neuroradiology and was embraced as an urbane, witty and brilliant clinician.

Keith travelled to the UK in 1950 and spent the next four years at the University of Oxford as a neurosurgical trainee in the professorial department, initially under the direction of Adelaide neurosurgeon, Sir Hugh Cairns, who was succeeded by Joe Pennybacker after the untimely death of Sir Hugh. Keith was inspired by the intellectual and cultural life of Oxford and cherished the memories for the rest of his life..

In 1955 he returned to Melbourne to become a neurosurgeon at St Vincent’s Hospital and remained there for the rest of his career. Invigorated by the intellectual rigour of Oxford, he introduced new initiatives to the hospital. He gradually instituted ward rounds, which included nursing and allied health staff, followed by coffee and St Vincent’s scones with cream in the clinic room of St Francis Ward. This became a hospital institution.

An astute man, Keith knew exactly what he was doing by focusing on teambuilding and patient-centred care. A tribute by the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons said he was passionate about teaching and found an “open market to sell his wares”.

Keith was head of the unit from 1966 until 1988 when he retired aged 65. He was instrumental in creating an exceptional teaching environment and is remembered fondly by students, residents and neurosurgical trainees.

His brilliant and enquiring mind drove him to be at the forefront of the dramatic changes that occurred in neurosurgery postwar. He championed aneurysm and pituitary surgery, in particular, and was among the first to introduce microsurgical techniques in Australia.

Keith acknowledged the essential multidisciplinary nature of neurosurgery and the importance of good relations across the disciplines. His great appreciation of pathology was shared with his long-term neuropathology colleague, Dr Ross Anderson.

Keith was thrilled at the nuances of neuroradiology from his early days with Arthur Schuller, through the era of neurosurgeons carrying out their own invasive investigations. Working with Eric Gilford ensured St Vincent’s was at the vanguard of the CT era by becoming one of the first hospitals in Australia to take up the technology.

St Vincent’s was his “home away from home” and he devoted his time to administrative matters by serving on multiple hospital committees and eventually became chairman of the Senior Medical Staff. He worked side-by-side with Sister Maureen Walters, the Sister Administrator, and they shared a close personal and working relationship.

In 1987, Keith’s outstanding devotion to neuroscience was recognized when he was awarded the Order of Australia for services to medicine.

After retiring from the hospital in 1988, he took on the position of Chairman, committee for medical graduate education, from 1989 to 1991.

During his retirement, he indulged his love of reading, predominantly non-fiction and poetry. The library was his favourite room in the house and he embarked on a biography of Arthur Schuller, which was all but complete at the time of his death.

Keith is remembered as a shy man but a person of great personal warmth and care for his fellow humans, particularly those whose welfare had been entrusted to him.

The staff of St Vincent’s paid tribute to Keith as “a true gentleman surgeon, demonstrating great technical skills, a great devotion to his patients and to the training of neurosurgical trainees. In doing so, he has left an indelible mark on St Vincent’s Hospital in general, and particularly on the neurosurgical department.”

Dr Ralph William Howard

(1931 – 2013)

Member, 1963

Dr Ralph William Howard MBBS

The Graduate Union extends its condolences to the family and friends of Dr Ralph William Howard who passed away on the 19th December, 2013.

Dr Howard joined The Graduate Union as a Life Member in 1963 and served for various periods on the Executive Committee, the House Board and the Finance Committee and on other ad hoc committees. In 1974, he was elected Vice-Chairman of the Graduate Council and later became Chairman from 1975 till 1977 and again from 1986 to 1987. He has said that he’s “the only Graduate Chairman who has been twice Chairman”. From 1995 till 1996, Dr Howard served as the President of The Graduate Union.

A Melbourne University MBBS (Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery) graduate, Dr Howard held various hospital appointments. In 1964, he was appointed the Federal Officer of the newly constituted Australian Medical Association. From 1965 to 1978, Dr. Howard was employed as a medical director in the pharmaceutical company, Glaxo Australia Pty Ltd which included a three-year term in Japan with his wife, Judith, and then young family. From 1976 to 1982, he was a Member of the Legislative Council for Templestowe Province and remained active in his profession. He also served as a member of the Council of La Trobe University from 1976 till 1986. In later years, Dr Howard maintained his support for The Graduate Union while continuing his medical practice with specialism in occupational medicine.

The Reverend Canon Donald Walter Johnston

(1928 – 2016)

Member, 1951

The Reverend Canon Donald Walter Johnston

We regret the sad news of the death of The Rev Canon Donald Walter Johnston who passed away on the 20th November, 2016.

Donald Johnston was educated in Melbourne, London, Emmanuel College and Ridley Hall in Cambridge, Fr Donald had a distinguished and influential career in ministry and education in both Australia and Papua New Guinea (PNG). In education, the posts of Chaplain at Brighton, then at Melbourne Grammar Schools, were followed by six years missionary service with the Anglican Church of PNG. There, he was Chaplain at Holy Name School, Dogura for a year before being appointed Head of Martyrs’ School, Popondetta in 1986.

He was responsible for parties of Melbourne Grammar School pupils having the opportunity to visit Martyrs’ School and other parts of PNG, experiences which, for many, will surely have played a significant role in their subsequent spiritual and personal development. Fr Donald was made a Canon by the Anglican Church of PNG (ACPNG) before his retirement in 1991. Since returning to Melbourne, he had been a lively ambassador and advocate for ACPNG and Martyrs’ School.

A former Australian colleague, now working overseas, wrote, “What sad news. Fr Donald was a kind and utterly genuine person. May his influence on many people, both in PNG and Australia, bring forth spiritual fruit in abundance. He will be reunited with his beloved wife.” The Johnston Library of Graduate House is named after Rev Johnston’s father, William Wallace Stewart Johnston (1897-1962). Johnston Street in Fitzroy was named after his father’s grandfather.

Betty Joan Cathles Keay

(1928 – 2018)

Honorary Life Member, 1982

Betty Joan Cathles Keay

We are deeply saddened by the passing of Miss Betty Keay, a high-achieving woman with a zest for life who was an inspiration to young and old.

Miss Betty Keay was born in Vaucluse Hospital, Coburg, not far from where she lived her whole life, in the family home, in Brunswick.  Her great-grandparents migrated from Scotland in the 1850s. She was the eldest of two daughters of Percy Cathles Keay and Nellie Florence Adele Keay née Lyle.

In a heartfelt eulogy from Betty’s niece, Anne Gibney (the daughter of Betty’s sister, Noeleine), mourners were told that Percy Keay was the honorary auditor for his church, the Brunswick Presbyterian Church, and Betty had a traditional strict Presbyterian upbringing. Betty’s childhood was framed by the Depression and World War II when luxuries were rare.

Betty commenced her education at Moreland Central School then attended University High school from Form 3 to Matriculation in the days when the US forces camped on the school oval and occupied the newly completed Royal Melbourne Hospital. As a child Betty learnt the piano, and at University High she played the viola in the school orchestra, but she was much keener on sport than music and excelled at swimming and hockey at school and tennis at the weekend at Coburg Tennis Club.

Betty commenced a degree in Science at the University of Melbourne but entered the workforce before she was able to complete that degree. She worked at the Commonwealth Aeronautic Laboratories at Fishermans Bend for four years carrying out mathematical computations for the testing and modification of aeroplane wings carried out in a high-speed wind tunnel.

After completing a Diploma of Education, she taught mathematics at Strathmore High School, University High School, Coburg High School and Melbourne College of Textiles in Pascoe Vale (TAFE), now part of RMIT.  She continued teaching until her retirement in 1988.

In the latter part of her teaching years she returned to study and became a keen student and enjoyed the challenge and intellectual stimulation of further and higher education.

In approximately 1980, while teaching, Betty obtained a Graduate Diploma of Business Studies at Swinburne and a Graduate Diploma of Curriculum Administration at Rusden. As part of her studies she wrote a research paper on determining the price of shares. The share market was an interest and hobby she continued to follow regularly.

In 1981, Betty received her Bachelor of Education from the University of Melbourne and began her long-standing and rewarding involvement with the Graduate Union that spanned 40 years.

While swimming at the Beaurepaire Pool, she befriended Patricia Young, who was a member of the Graduate Union. Pat took Betty there for a meal and suggested that she should join  as it was good place to have a cup of coffee and work between lectures. Betty found the welcoming environment to be “friendly” and on 1st May, 1982, she joined as a Life Member.

As a highly-skilled bridge player in 2002, Betty took on the organisation of the Bridge Group and not only rebuilt it but invigorating it by attracting new members. The Group now comprises about 28 people and meets each Wednesday night with 16 to 20 players who enjoy this intellectually stimulating game, supper and the company of like-minded people. After handing the organization of the Group to Graham Skews and Joan Thompson, who alternate weekly, Betty continued to be a quiet leader and inspiration.

During her retirement, Betty’s interest in bridge gained momentum and she also played at the Monee Valley Bridge Club and Essendon Bridge Club. Betty continued to play cards/bridge every Tuesday, even into this year, and it was one of the highlights of her week.

During her time as a Member of the Graduate Union, Betty was a great supporter of the Monthly Luncheons, the Twilight Lectures and the Sunday Musical Concerts. In 2013, at the Chairman’s Cocktail Party in December, Betty was awarded a Certificate of Appreciation for her organisation of the Bridge Group and in 2014 she was awarded Honorary Life Membership.

Betty, an energetic role model to the young and the old, always had many interests and was constantly active throughout her life. In the 1960s and 1970s she was Secretary and President of the Coburg Tennis Club and umpired championships at Kooyong. Betty was also a keen skier and stayed at Mt Buller in the CSIRO’s lodge frequently with friends.

When Betty retired, she developed an interest in genealogy and set out to research the family history. She researched her great grandfather’s brother, Peter Keay, who in the 1850s, had a shipbuilding business on the Yarra River near Flinders Street. His son, travelled by ship to Nome Alaska in 1910 in search of gold. He settled in Nome, married and established a shipping line business. Betty re-connected with her long-lost cousins after years of no contact and both Noeleine and Betty have been in regular communication with them ever since, including Betty making several trips to Alaska and them to Australia.

In the 1990s, Betty began volunteering at the Public Records Office in Victoria. This commenced when she was looking through microfiche films to trace members of her own family. She was invited to join a group at the Public Records Office to index the films held there and then later was involved in the indexing of shipping records from 1924 – 1950. Subsequently, Betty has assisted to index all inquests held in Victoria and records of World War 1 soldier settlements.

Betty’s love for overseas travel is legendary, some would describe Betty as intrepid. She began her travels to Fiji and New Zealand and then to South East Asia and beyond. Betty has been to most parts of the world that tourists travel to, as well as many off the tourist trail including, Afghanistan, Pakistan, the Philippines, Burma, Mexico, China, and Mongolia.

Betty spent six months travelling through South America, learning Spanish and researching the Inca civilisations – she was always seeking an intellectual challenge.

She did a year-long teaching exchange in the USA enabling her to explore the country and make new friends.

Later in life Betty enjoyed travelling to Scotland to research family history at the Edinburgh Library. She had a special connection to Scotland and Edinburgh and returned year after year exploring Scotland and its Isles making new friends, discovering distant relatives and catching up with old acquaintances.

Betty had a close relationship with her sister Noeleine, and they supported each other all their lives. Her ice-cream plum pudding at Christmas time was legendary – well laced with brandy, rum, or sherry – as was her brandy sauce.

Noeleine’s daughter, Anne Gibney, fondly recalled Betty “Offering us good company, support, encouragement and sometimes sage and insightful advice. She was determined to master new technologies embracing computers, smart phones and social media. While not always successful first, second, or even third time, she was very determined, and would never give up.

“Because she lived to 89 she survived many family and friends. For many years there was a group that went to the Melbourne Theatre Company, opera and occasionally musicals, about once a month.

“While of recent times her heath has been failing, her mind was just about as sharp as ever. She knew where everyone was, what they were doing, what their goals and aspirations were, as well as sometimes the hurdles that they needed to overcome. Despite her failing health she never complained and forged on determined to hang onto her independence for as long as possible.”

During her later years, her nephews Andrew and Richard provided Betty with a lot of support, care and companionship, and for some time Andrew was her primary helper especially with transport after she was required to hand in her driver’s licence.  This event significantly curtailed her social activities and fierce independence.

“We have been very fortunate to have Betty enrich our lives on so many levels. She has been a great role model. She was very generous to us but not spoiling, patient but not pandering, supportive but not interfering. Betty’s life has been full of rich experiences, travels, lifelong learning, friendships and achievements. She was will be sadly missed and remembered with much affection.”

We are deeply grateful to Anne Gibney for this touching tribute.

Emeritus John David McLaren

(1932 – 2015)

Member, 1959

Emeritus John David McLaren AM

Life Member Emeritus Professor John David McLaren AM passed away on the 4th December, 2015. In 2014, John was appointed as a Member of the Order of Australia for significant service to education, particularly the humanities and social sciences, as an academic, mentor and teacher.

The following obituary entitled “Professor helped shake cobwebs off ‘hidebound Victorian ALP'”(published 17th December, 2015) is by John’s friend and colleague, Nathan Hollier, Director of Monash University Publishing and a past editor of Overland. We thank Life Member Olive Hamilton, John’s closest lifelong friend, for sharing this obituary with us.

Asked how he was getting along towards the end, John McLaren remarked: “As I get older, my body seems to deteriorate, which is the opposite of what I’d hoped would happen.” The humour pointed to a larger and admirably human philosophy: recognising that life is what we make of it and we should take all knowledge and faith seriously, but not solemnly. For the past 15 years John had to live that life without devoted wife Shirley who died on the last day of 1999. Declared John at the time: “The lodestar has gone from my life.”
John McLaren AM, who has died aged 83, made an outstanding contribution to Australian life, most fundamentally as a teacher, but also as an administrator, scholar, editor and active campaigner for a better community, nation and world (importantly, in that order). Born in Malvern, John attended Caulfield North Central School, Scotch College, Ballarat High (after his bank manager father was posted to that town), and Scotch College again as a boarder for two years when the family moved to Wycheproof. Bonded to the Education Department, like so many of his generation at university, John took up a secondary studentship at the Secondary Teachers’ Centre at the University of Melbourne, before beginning work as a teacher at Princes Hill Central School, North Carlton, in 1954. Being ill-prepared by an Education Department only recently renamed from the “Department of Instruction”, he was to pay credit in his memoirs to experienced educators “who enabled some of us to survive”. According to John, the “classroom teacher is daily confronted with the most complex social situation of any professional”. Having gained a Diploma of Education John was posted to Yarrawonga where he met his future wife Shirley Stewart. They adopted two brothers, Jim and Cameron, then aged five and four, in 1961. The family moved to Carlton in 1966, where Shirley helped to establish Flemington High and John gained a foothold at Melbourne University in the Secondary Teachers College.

John wrote his first book, Our Troubled Schools, helped to draw up the constitution of the College Staffs Association, later incorporated into the National Tertiary Education Union, and went with Shirley to Indonesia in 1970 on the first Community Aid Abroad study tour. In 1972 he became head of the humanities department of the Darling Downs Institute of Advanced Education, in Toowoomba. In late 1975 he moved to the Footscray Institute of Technology to lead its department of Humanities and became part of an informal “Footscray committee” meeting each week to consider what the area needed and how those needs might be organised. To generations of western suburbs students, young and mature-aged, he was a caring and inspiring educator, retiring as professor from what was by then Victoria University, in 1997, but remaining very active in university life. As Peter Dawkins, the current Victoria University vice-chancellor, said to staff on John’s death, he was “in many ways the grandfather of today’s College of Arts”.

As a scholar John had a remarkable breadth of knowledge but specialised in Australian, South Asian and South-East Asian literary studies. He wrote more than a dozen books, including the influential Writing in Hope and Fear: Literature as Politics in Postwar Australia. His works were among the most sourced and cited of all Victoria University staff.

John acted for a time as editor of the Farrago while a student at Melbourne University, had a long association with the radical literary magazine Overland and until 1986 was editor of Australian Book Review from the time of its re-establishing by the National Book Council eight years earlier. He later recalled that “the excitement of the job was its involvement in the world of Australian writers which, despite the harsh shock that ended the Whitlam years, still pulsed with the energy that came from a belief that as a nation we could achieve whatever we wanted”.

John stood as ALP candidate for the federal seat of Indi in 1958, going down to the Nationals candidate who after all, John observed wryly, was standing on his record as a footballer. In the 1960s, with Race Mathews, Clyde Holding, John Button and others, he fought to democratise and liberalise the hidebound Victorian ALP, prior to Whitlam’s federal intervention. He was made a life member of the ALP in 1999 and remained in the party, despite reservations about its contemporary directions.

Whitlam remained a hero: in 2014, when he was made a Member of the Order of Australia, John wore an original “It’s Time” badge to the celebratory drinks at Jimmy Watson’s wine bar.

This story was sourced from:

Mr John (Jack) Francis Miller

(1924 – 2014)

Member, 1958

Mr John (Jack) Francis Miller OAM

The Graduate Union extends its condolences to the family and friends of Mr John (Jack) Miller who passed away on 17th January 2014. Jack joined The Graduate Union in 1958.

Jack was born at home in Windsor and went to Hampton High School, St Kevin’s College and later to The University of Melbourne. He taught at Hampton High School for many years and was appointed principal from 1976 to 1980. The Library was named after him. His service to this secondary school is remembered on two plaques in the Hampton High Park in Favril Street, Hampton. Jack was also Principal of Sunbury High School and Fitzroy High School and Acting Principal at other schools, including Brighton and Sandringham Secondary Colleges.

After retirement Jack became a volunteer business manager for the John Pierce Centre for theDeaf for 10 years. In 1998, Jack’s community service was recognised with an Order of Australia medal. The citation read, “for service to people with impaired hearing through the John Pierce Centre and to the community”.

For almost 40 years he was an active member of the Australia Day Council. He served as Victorian treasurer and later auditor; and was made a life member of the Council in recognition of his dedicated service. Jack contributed to the work of many other organisations including the Order of Australia Association, the Dante Alighieri Society,the Old Hamptonians, Red Cross and the Victorian State Secondary Past Principals Association.

He has received many honours, including the prestigious Paul Harris Fellowship from Rotary International. He was a member of the Society of Certified Practising Accountants for over 55 years and was the honorary auditor for many not-for-profit bodies. As read by George Rowney in tribute, I can vouch for him as one of the kindest and most considerate persons known to me.

Miss Kathleen Margaret Peace Rankin

(1918 – 2016)

Life Member, 1971

Miss Kathleen Rankin

We are touched and deeply grateful for the $10,000 bequest from Miss Kathleen Rankin.

Under the terms of her will, Miss Kathleen Peace Rankin left the following legacy to the Graduate Union: “The sum of TEN THOUSAND DOLLARS ($10,000) in memory of my said father [Donald Hamilton Rankin] and it is my wish that a small memorial plaque bearing his name be affixed in some suitable place in Graduate House as deemed appropriate by the said Graduate Union.”

A woman destined to be remembered, Kathleen Peace Rankin was born in Perth on Remembrance Day, November 11 in 1918, hence the name “Peace” as her father was overjoyed that she arrived on the day the Great War ended.

She was the second child of Donald Hamilton Rankin and Marion Margaret (nee Morton) Rankin, who was known as “Doll” to the family. Don and Doll were from Victoria, and Don moved to Western Australia about 1915 where other Rankin uncles (including his widowed father) had preceded him. Kathleen’s older brother, Donald Joseph Malcolm Rankin, was born in Perth in 1916.

The Rankin family stayed in Perth until 1927, by which time Don’s father and his Rankin uncles and aunts (except the youngest) had died, so he returned to Melbourne where other cousins lived.

A tribute compiled by Miss Rankin’s cousin Paul Rankin and other cousin family members contains the following fond memories. Miss Rankin studied for a Bachelor of Arts at the University of Melbourne and for many years had an interest in the French language. In her later years as a resident in an aged-care facility, when visited one day by cousins, she insisted on speaking French to them, a language they only had a smattering of. Fortunately, a carer spoke French to interpret.

Miss Rankin worked as a paralegal for many years, going well beyond the retirement age. She never married but in her younger days was quite social and travelled to Europe on her own when she was in her 20s.

Her brother Malcolm had a brilliant academic career at the University of Melbourne, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering (B.E.E.) with Honours in December 1937 as a 21-year-old. In 1938, he was awarded an exhibition to study at Cambridge University, but died in a car accident later that year, a profound tragedy for the family. A scholarship fund was established in the Engineering department by Don in memory of his son, and following her father’s death in 1974, Miss Rankin continued to support this fund.

After her parents died, Miss Rankin remained living in the family home until she purchased her own flat in Armadale. She enjoyed entertaining family members, each being invited to share a sherry before dinner. In earlier days, she had become competent in playing the piano and occasionally would delight family and friends with demonstrations of her skill.

As she grew older, she remained very independent but living on one’s own is not always ideal, particularly where stairs are involved. After a number of falls in her 80s, it was decided that she could not manage on her own, so she was accommodated in an aged-care facility.

Miss Rankin’s father, Don, was a teacher and academic of some renown and in addition to honouring him with a plaque at the Graduate Union through her bequest, she paid tribute to him in 1987 with the book she privately printed: Masters Never Die: A Tribute to My Father, Donald Hamilton Rankin, M.A., M.Ed. 1880-1974, Educationalist & Historian. The book features in the National Library of Australia catalogue.

Here at the Graduate Union, we are indebted to Members and late Members for remembering us in their will through a bequest and in turn, we remember them in perpetuity. Benefaction plays a crucial role in securing our future for Residents, Members and future generations.

“Your bequest will assist us to continue providing high-quality affordable college accommodation for post-graduate students and researchers from all over the world.

“Such an endowment will help to provide more funding, networking and career opportunities for graduates at all life stages. Your generosity will allow us to preserve and grow a proud membership institution that is owned and run by its Members. We want to continue to honour in perpetuity those, like you, who have supported our Union and our House through bequests.”

If you wish to provide for us in your will, you can submit an Intent to Bequest form online or email:

Associate Professor Harold Charles Richards


(1925 – 2014)

Member, 2010

Associate Professor Harold Charles Richards AM

We are saddened by the news that Associate Professor Harold Charles Richards AM passed away on 2nd June, 2014 at the age of 88 years. A Graduate Union Member since 2010, Professor Richards AM is the co-founder of Hardcastle & Richards Consulting Engineers.

The ‘graduate pathway’ story of him and Roy T Hardcastle AO, Life Members and business partners, was featured on page 26 of the July, 2013 issue of The Melbourne Graduate. In November 1979, a bronze relief by renown artist Michael Meszaros, entitled Compression and Tension was presented to the Department of Civil Engineering to mark the 25th Anniversary of the founding of the partnership of Hardcastle & Richards.

Harold Richards accepted an honorary appointment as Associate Professor and later commented: “It was a great honour to be asked. It was one of the most important things that I have done – helping intelligent people and having the opportunity to pass on my knowledge to them.” Over the years Harold and Roy have also been consistent donors to the School of Engineering. Harold has also donated to International House, while Roy is a former member of the University’s Committee of Convocation and a regular attendee at Heritage Society events. Theirs is a track record of outstanding contribution to the University on many levels. Their passion for the University and their industry is undiminished after many decades of service.

Additional tributes for Professor Richards AM:

Cherished husband, companion and friend of Joyce. Adored by his children Anthony, Margaret, Noel, Rosalie and Naomi. Loved, admired and respected by Christine, Chris, Janice, John, Joe and Michael and grandchildren Saffron and Trefor, William and Karla, Yolanda and Chris, Tom, Maggie and Eddie, Edward (dec), Rosalie, Vivienne and Kit, and great grandchildren Beatrix, Elizabeth (Elsie) and Lachie. A life lived to the full., published 6th June, 2014

The Rotary Club of Carlton:

Our friend and founding President of the Rotary Club of Carlton, Harold, died at his home on the 2nd June, 2014 in the presence of his beloved wife Joyce. His passing was gentle with a loss of wellness over his later years but retaining the sense of wisdom he was remembered for, together with his love and concern for those around him. Harold’s leadership qualities were recognised by Rotary when he was asked to form the Rotary Club of Carlton, and when the Club was chartered in June 1985, he was elected Charter President. Under his leadership the Club became known as the “friendly club” and continues to this day. Over time Harold’s guidance and commonsense has been a pervasive influence in all our major decisions.

His “service above self” will be greatly missed but long remembered. The Rotary Club of Carlton honours the memory of our respected Charter President as a man of integrity, who was the rock of our Club for 29 years. The Rotary Club of Carlton acknowledges his guidance, his calm common-sense and his exceptional “Service above Self”. Our condolences to his family and those close to him., published 10th June, 2014

Professor Robin Lorimer Sharwood


(1931 – 2015)

Member, 1968

Professor Robin Lorimer Sharwood AM

Professor Sharwood, an Honorary Life Member of our Association, joined as a young graduate in 1968 and was our President from 1986 to 1989. He gave generously of his time and expertise in law and legal education and was a much loved and deeply respected contributor to our graduate membership association. The photograph was taken from the September 1990 issue of the Melbourne Graduate in a farewell message when he completed his term of office as the ninth President of The Graduate Union. With an outstanding and distinguished career, Professor Sharwood AM contributed greatly to the community, particularly to the law. He was a Foundation Fellow of the Melbourne College of Divinity and a Fellow of Trinity College, Melbourne.

Professor Sharwood was educated at Mont Albert Central School and Wesley College before completing his Bachelor of Arts (1953) at the University of Melbourne. He graduated with an LLB (Hons) in 1954 from Melbourne Law School, winning the Supreme Court Prize. He was also a Senior Lecturer from 1958-1962.

During his academic career he spent time at institutions including London School of Economics, Harvard University and the University of California, Berkeley where he was appointed the Walter Perry Johnson Graduate Research Fellowship in Law and obtained his LLM the following year. He returned to Australia two years later to take up positions with Melbourne Law School and Ormond College before he was appointed Chair in Law at the Australian National University.

Professor Sharwood became the fourth Warden of Trinity College from 1965 to 1973. Under his leadership the College moved through a period of great social change, and he oversaw the transition from a male-only college to co-residency. He was a passionate collector and supporter of the arts, with interests encompassing painting, etching and porcelain, many of which have been gifted to the College. He was also an important advocate and advisor for the Trinity College Theological School. He then worked at the Victorian Law Foundation before his return to Melbourne Law School. Professor Sharwood was also Lay Canon of St Paul’s Cathedral for almost 35 years, as well as Chancellor of the Anglican Church to the Dioceses of Wangaratta (1974-99) and Ballarat (1995-2002), advising on matters of Ecclesiastical Law, a specialty in which he practised pro bono for more than three decades.
He was also involved in the Arts Council of Australia, Australian Broadcasting Commission, Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne Trust Fund, and Friends of the Gallery Library of the National Gallery of Victoria.

Following his retirement as Warden, Professor Sharwood resumed a prominent legal career and remained keenly involved in the affairs of the College, becoming a Fellow in 1980 and Senior Fellow in 2011. He was a much loved and highly respected member of Trinity. Professor Sharwood’s service to the wider community through his many roles in law and legal education, and in the Anglican Church, was recognised in the 2000 Australia Day Honours when he was made a Member of the Order of Australia.

Mr Ralph Edward Skilbeck

(1927 – 2014)

Member, 1983

Mr Ralph Edward Skilbeck

Mr Ralph Skilbeck was a regular attender at GU Collegiate functions, as well as a supporter and donor. He passed away peacefully in Knox Private Hospital on 23rd June 2014 at age 86 years, after a short illness.

Ralph will be remembered fondly. He was charming, generous and blessed with a sense of humour that was delivered with a dead pan face until the joke was delivered, whereupon his face would light up with a sunny grin! He attended many of the Music Sundays, and was always pleased to welcome the performers warmly and offer them refreshments following the performance. He was a regular also at Monthly Luncheons, Twilight Lectures, the Chairman’s Cocktail functions and the Members’ Christmas parties. Never afraid to take on the technology age, he was also a keen follower of the Information Technology Series that we convened here in 2012. The last function that Ralph attended at Graduate House was our annual general meeting and dinner on 29th May, 2014.

Mr Skilbeck attended (Melbourne High School), graduating (or exiting as this school records) in 1943, to then become an active member of Melbourne High School Old Boys’ Association, joining many and varied committees to assist with the organisation of their reunions and events.

Ralph joined the Australian Boys Choir back in 1939, as an eleven year old where he remained a chorister till 1944. Ralph’s son Mark was also a member of the Choir, becoming one of the first choristers who was a son of an ‘old boy’. Ralph attended the 70th Anniversary celebrations of the Choir in 2009.

Mr Skilbeck worked as a hospital administrator throughout his career, completing a course in Hospital Administration at the University of New South Wales in 1975 as an external student and with sponsorship from the then Victorian Hospital’s and Charities Commission. He is mentioned in several Annual Reports from this Commission as having attained outstanding results in each year of his enrolment. As he progressed through a number of senior hospital management roles in Melbourne, he contributed to mentoring and leadership programs for earlier career graduates through his membership of the Victoria Regional Group of the Australasian College of Health Service Management.

Ralph will be missed here at Graduate House. We shall remain grateful to have had the opportunity to be a small part of his full and joyful existence.

The following tribute to Ralph from this family, was published in The Age newspaper:

Passed away peacefully in Knox Private Hospital after a short illness.
Loved father, father-in-law, grandfather and great-grandfather of Catherine and Lou, Kate, Matt, Mason, Christopher, Abby, Layla, Maya, Joanne, John, Jamie-Lee, Britney, Millie, Ella; Helen and Alan, David, Grace, Ruby, Tom; Wendy and John; Mark and Libby, Jessica, Tom, Amelia, Lachlan, Michael; Michael and Jaslyn. May the Lord bless you and keep you., published 25th June, 2014

Ms Kitty (Catharina Clara) Van Wees-Miller

(1937 – 2017)

Member, 1998

Ms Kitty Van Wees-Miller

We mourn the loss of Kitty Van Wees-Miller, a teacher and enthusiastic fashionista who became “Superwoman” through her love of the cape.

Kitty Van Wees-Miller was a popular Geelong identity and devoted English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher who had an international outlook as a passionate refugee advocate.

Former students hailed her as a “wonderful” teacher who enriched their lives through her devotion to education and ESL.

Kitty was an effervescent spirit at Graduate House and is fondly remembered for her presence at Annual General Meetings and dinners, monthly lunches, the Chairman’s cocktail party, concerts and finance seminars.

A natural performer, members recall Kitty singing along to Silent Night at one of our Christmas parties and putting her heart into “Christmas in July” celebrations that involved karaoke and dancing.

In addition to her academic prowess, she was known for her flair for fashion and regal wearer of the cape. Very much the “Superwoman” of the caped crusade, she wore them with her customary aplomb.

Renowned as the “high priestess of The House of Capes” with a unique swirl, Kitty was fully versed on the cape as a graduation essential and presidential status symbol.

She once mused that Bill Clinton wore a cape to his inauguration in 1993 and capes are now “happy serving wearers” in Paris, Moscow, Jerusalem, Tokyo, New York and even some of the Findhorn community in Scotland.

Through the House of Capes, Kitty created a collection “inspired by the past and incorporating the needs of today, to give you truly unique garments full of movement, warmth and life”.

Such was the appeal of the fashion statement that the capes were snapped up by enthusiastic customers across the globe. Kitty even had an email address named “kittycapes” for her correspondence.

The Geelong community paid tribute to the well-regarded former teacher with a funeral at St Mary of the Angels Basilica on July 28.

Dr Bertram Sutherland Vanrenen

(1920 – 2014)

Member, 1954

Dr Bertram Sutherland Vanrenen

We were informed of the death of Dr Bertram Vanrenen on the 6th July, 2014 (aged 93 years) by his son, Alan Vanrenen. The following has been collated from a tribute written by Alan for The University of Melbourne alumni obituary pages and from a submission made by Dr Vanrenen to the Productivity Commission entitled “Australia’s Health Workforce”.

Born on the 6th November, 1920 in Essendon to Henry Baumgard Vanrenan and Winifred Vanrenen (née Sutherland), Bertram was the third of four brothers (Henry, 1913-1988; Adrian, 1915-1968; and Donald, 1924-1992). All brothers attended schools in St Arnaud (a regional Victorian town to the north-west of Melbourne) before becoming boarders at Geelong College to complete their secondary school education.

Having enrolled in Medicine pre war, ‘Bert’ enlisted in the army as a student and when a resident at Ormond College. A member of the Royal Australian Army Medical Corps from 1942 to 1946, he undertook active service in the 2/8th Commando Squadron as a Regimental Aid Post (Medical Centre) Corporal and ‘fully trained jungle fighter’ in New Guinea and Bougainville from 1943 to 1946. Notwithstanding post war effects on his health, Bertram re-commenced his studies under the World War Two Rehabilitation Graduate Scheme, successfully graduating in 1951 with a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery.

Dr Bertram followed the footsteps of his uncle, the well-known Dr Bertram Milne Sutherland; while his three brothers continued in Agriculture in Victoria. Bertram worked as an ‘Aussie General Practitioner from 1951 till about 1974’ in his own words. He then describes himself as ‘little more than a Community Family Physician’ and ‘a pseudo Employee indirectly of the Commonwealth Government’s Health Department!(HIC)’

Bert was a proud and traditional general practitioner who made family medicine his life’s work. He firmly believed in early diagnosis and preventative medicine and was a firm advocate for early intervention and public health. Particularly following his retirement in 2002, he was also a strong advocate for appropriate pay, terms and conditions, and facilities for Australian family physicians and general practitioners.

In correspondence to a previous Premier of Victoria, Sir Henry Bolte, some decades ago, Ila describes her husband as “ … that gentle man whose only concern is the health and welfare of his patients.”

The following tribute to Dr Vanrenen from this family, was published in The Age newspaper:

Dr Bertram Sutherland, VANRENEN (6.11.1920 – 6.7.2014) Passed away peacefully at The Gables.
Beloved husband of Ila. Loving father of Alan, Louise and Annabel. Father-in-law to Christine, Troy and Tony. Grandfather to Sally, Amy, Lucy, Chris, Jamie, Vikki, Kate and Alex. He served our country in World War 2, 2/8 Commando COY. Looked after our families for over 50 years in General Practice. Mentor to those who chose Medicine as a career. Rest in Peace as you join your brothers in heaven., published 10th July, 2014

Dr Geoffrey Norman Vaughan


(1933 – 2018)

Life Member, 1963

Dr Geoffrey Norman Vaughan

We mourn the loss of Dr Geoffrey Vaughan, AO, a noted scientist in the field of chemistry and talented sportsman who played rugby union for Australia with the Wallabies.

Geoffrey Vaughan was born in Sydney and attended Homebush Boy’s High School where his chemistry teacher and school rugby coach, Mr Neil Madsen, was of great influence on his early life.

In 1956, Geoff graduated from Sydney University with a Master of Science, majoring in Chemistry, and in 1961 he gained his PhD in Chemistry from The University of Melbourne.

Geoff was a Wallaby and for the benefit of our international readers, and Australians who only know about AFL, this does not mean that he started life as a marsupial. On the contrary, it means that he has always been a human but probably through this strong influence of Mr Madsen, developed particularly good skills at the football code known as Rugby Union.

Being a Wallaby means that he represented Australia in a team called the Wallabies, who are now easily recognised by their gold and green sporting uniforms.

Due to his excellent sporting prowess, Geoff played in six Tests in 1957 and 1958. Not surprisingly, he was captain of The University of Melbourne Rugby Club when they won four premierships from 1959 to 1963. He remembers fondly the 1950s and 1960s as golden years with six premiership wins in eight years for The University.

Geoff’s first job was as a Lecturer in Pharmaceutical Chemistry at The Victorian College of Pharmacy based, interestingly at the Parkville campus of Monash University just up the road from The University of Melbourne. Over the next 26 years he progressed from Lecturer to Senior Lecturer to Dean of Chemistry, and from 1979 to 1986, to Dean and Director of the College.

At Geoff’s PhD graduation in 1961, William Berry, the then Secretary-Warden of the Graduate Union, was outside Wilson Hall offering new graduates membership of the Graduate Union. It was only a small fee to take up Life Membership, which the newly titled Dr Vaughan so elected to do. This started an association with The Graduate Union that spanned more than 50 years, with Geoff serving on the Council of the Graduate Union during the 1980s.

In 1986, Dr Vaughan was invited to take up the position of Director of the then Chisholm Institute of Technology. This college of advanced education was a multidisciplinary institute with a range of courses at graduate and post-graduate levels, and a sound reputation in engineering and business.

Four years later, Dr Vaughan became the Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Research at Monash University under Vice-Chancellor Professor Mal Logan, and thence heavily involved in the start-up of several Cooperative Research Centres (CRCs), and in research management across the University.

In 1992, Dr Vaughan was invited to the newly created position of National Manager of the Therapeutic Goods Administration in the Commonwealth Department of Health, Canberra. This four-year appointment arose from the Baume Report, which had been commissioned by the Keating Government to review drug and medical device registration in Australia.

The Report contained 167 recommendations, one of which was to appoint a National Manager who, in the form of Dr Vaughan, subsequently managed to implement the recommendations in full, with the result that Australia met all international standards of that time for drugs and devices.

Dr Vaughan then took up directorships of several companies in pharmaceutical and related industries, and was appointed to the position of Chairman of the Australian Government’s Cooperative Research Centres Committee, a committee appointed by the (now-named) Minister for Innovation Industry, Science and Research to provide recommendations about applications for CRC funding, performance, monitoring and review of individual CRC’s activities and the planning, monitoring and evaluation of the CRC Program.

Dr Vaughan held this Chair for 10 years and thus oversaw significant scientific endeavor and innovation across the nation and across the world in the sectors of the environment, agriculture and rural-based manufacturing, information and communication technology, mining and energy, medical science and technology, and manufacturing technology.

He was also appointed as a member of the Industry Research and Development Board, and as Chairman to the Medical Devices Industry Action Agenda.

Dr Vaughan gradually semi-retired and held one position as a Director at the Advance Manufacturing Cooperative Research Centre (AMCRC) based at Swinburne University. He found time for his hobbies of gardening, swimming and cooking.

In the Royal Melbourne Show, he scooped the pool in the cooking section for handmade breads with two firsts, two seconds and a third with his five entries. We here at The Graduate Union dreamt of demonstration, the more so to experience the wafting aromas of freshly baked bread in Graduate House.

Among his many accomplishments, Dr Vaughan was a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (ATSE), had the honorary degree of Doctor of Laws of Monash University, and was an Honorary Fellow of several scientific societies.

In a much-deserved accolade, Dr Vaughan was awarded an AO, an Officer of the Order of Australia, in the Queen’s Birthday Honours in 2006: “For service to scientific research and development, particularly through contributions to the development of government policy initiatives, to the growth of innovative technology-based Australian companies, and to education as a mentor and supporter of young scientists.”

Sadly, Dr Vaughan died peacefully at home and a tribute in The Age said: “Dearly loved and loving husband of Jennie (dec.). Loved and loving father of David, Michael, Peter and Jane. Loved grandfather of Charlie, Anna, Eloise, Peter, George, Thomas, Amelia, Harry and Jonny. “A good life lived to the full. We will all miss him.”

A celebration of his life was held at the RACV Club on January 10.