2022 has been a very busy year. After two years of COVID interruptions the Association committed to a calendar of 42 events which included three reunions carried over from 2021. I can proudly say, through the diligence and hard work by our Executive Officer and her network of convenors, the program of events was achieved.
It was pleasing to see the Old Red community benefiting from the ability to meet, and enjoy the camaraderie, the stories and the laughter, whilst enjoying the local, interstate and overseas dinners. All the reunions were very well attended, including an inaugural 65 year reunion.
The PAOCA Management Committee farewelled Headmaster Bradley Fenner at a dinner at The Adelaide Club on Wednesday 1 June. On behalf of all Old Reds, we thank him for his dedication and commitment to the Association.
We congratulate and welcome to Prince Alfred College, Mr David Roberts, the 12th Headmaster of the College. David joined with Old Reds in celebrating, with enthusiasm, Old Scholars’ Week which included a very moving Old Old Boys’ Assembly (with 179 Old Old Scholars being presented to the College), and the Annual Dinner (with 310 Old Reds).
Each intercol event was keenly competed against our Old Blue rivals, with the rivalry morphing into friendships, post competition. This year we were successful in bowls, football, tennis, basketball and squash, and runners up in cricket, golf, bridge, chess, badminton and eight ball. Next year we hope to continue with water polo, and include darts and rowing.
The 22nd Vintage Reds Luncheon was held at the College on Thursday 20 October, and attended by 271 Old Reds.
These events demonstrate the willingness of the old scholar community to socialise with their College mates, and reflects the tradition and strength of our Association. The wellbeing of our Association is enhanced by the commitment of time and energy by our sporting club committees and their members, who ensure our teams are competitive at the best level of competition in their respective sports.
Through the above-mentioned activities, plus email, social media and mail your Association brings together the Prince Alfred Old Collegians’ community. Our network embraces the new world, so no matter where you are, what career path you select or where your travels take you, communication through the Old Reds can give you contacts in the vicinity of your destination.
I congratulate the following Old Reds who were awarded an Order of Australia in 2022:
Australia Day Honours
- Mr Stephen Charles HAINS AM (PAC 1955-1966)
- Professor William Frederic HEDDLE AM RFD (PAC 1954-1965)
- Mr Ian Barry DIGBY OAM (PAC 1950-1954)
- Mr Alexander HILL OAM (PAC 2008-2010)
Queen’s Birthday Honours
- Mr Jeffrey Roy ELLISON AM (PAC 1972-1976)
- Mr Bruce Beaumont NEWMAN OAM (PAC 1944-1949)
Congratulations to Mr Tom Keane (1996), Corporate Vice-President Microsoft Azure, based in Seattle, who was inducted into the Princes Men Gallery in April 2022 and also Mr Thomas Clarnette (1982), Senior Consultant Paediatric Surgeon at Royal Children’s Hospital, Monash Children’s Hospital, Sunshine Hospital and Goulburn Valley Health, who was inducted into the Princes Men Gallery in August 2022.
From an Association point of view, your Management Committee has met monthly, with the Committee members’ skillsets giving well balanced outcomes for the benefit of the old scholar community. We are well placed to assist each of our active sporting clubs whilst also supporting and contributing to projects as and when presented to the Committee.
The Management Committee made a commitment, a number of years ago, to assist in the establishment of new clubroom facilities at Park 9 for the Football and Cricket Clubs. This year we donated $500,000 to the project. The Park 9 pavilion is due for completion in the first quarter of 2023.
We also assisted the College to fund a history wall. When you next visit the College, take time out to absorb the historical pictorial snapshot of the College’s evolution since 1869.
We firmly believe that our Association must continue to evolve each year creating new initiatives for the benefit of its members and the College, and continue to offer all of its members, regardless of their stage in life, the means to remain connected with fellow Old Reds and the College.
Currently we are formalising a mentoring program for Old Reds, and participation from Old Reds as a mentor or mentee is welcomed.
Another initiative in the early stages of development is a health and wellbeing program, which we will roll out through the sporting clubs. We see this as a fundamental issue in today’s society and see the need for ongoing support of our member base in today’s environment.
By the time you read this report I would have retired as President of the Prince Alfred Old Collegians’ Association. During what could be considered as challenging times over the last three years, I have witnessed the strength of our community, the students and the College staff who have all worked together to achieve a balanced outcome in what is considered to be a changing world. To this end I must thank each and every member of the Management Committee for their commitment, dedication and input, in particular our Treasurer, Mr John Jovicevic, for his professionalism and insight when preparing the monthly financial reports and chairing the Finance & Audit Committee.
One person who deserves accolades from our membership is PAC Foundation Executive Officer, Mr David Cornish (1987). David is respected and known by our community through his knowledge of College history, family connections and his humour. We all wish him the best in his future endeavours.
Last but certainly not least, my gratitude and appreciation to Mary-Ann Standish for her knowledge, drive, communication skills and attention to detail, which ensures our Association stands as an example to other alumni.
In closing, the Princes community was born out of the standards, spirit and ideals of our forefathers in 1869. The old scholar community represents our College tradition which is unique. Our reputation is unmatched by the support, benevolence and selfless contribution our old scholar community gives to the College and community. We should be proud to be a Princes Man, or if you prefer an Old Red.
Fac Fortia Et Patere
Alan Letcher (1966)
PAOCA President 2020-2022