Trinity and beyond
Overall my time at Trinity was a happy time. Outside of the academic and sporting environment, I really appreciated the opportunities I had to develop leadership skills. In my last two years in particular Br Siebert was a great mentor as we worked together on social programs such as, “Freedom from Hunger”. These leadership skills proved critical to my future career.
In my last two years of school I was very fortunate to have Br Broderick as my Biology Teacher and there was a new curriculum called the Web of Life. The idea was that we learnt by actually doing experiments and I fell in love with both biology and experimentation. After completing a BSc (Hons) at UWA and a PhD at ANU, I spent my entire career as a scientist in organisations such as CSIRO, CSL, and Pfizer. My father had suggested that if there was something I loved, try and see if I could get a job doing it and I thank him for his wisdom.
His greatest achievement
I had the good fortune to invent a new test in 1985 that led to a totally new way of diagnosing Tuberculosis and this has been a great success both clinically and commercially. Myself and my colleagues received numerous awards for this work, including the CSIRO Medal, Clunies Ross Award and in 2018 I was made an Officer in the Order of Australia (AO). I thank Br Broderick for his commitment – it was through him that I first developed my passion for science.
His fondest memory
Sport was important at Trinity and I remember when we joined the PSA and first competed in Athletics.
Br Cronin was the Head Coach and he had the whole school try out for various events. At the first sports carnival they welcomed Trinity and hoped we might win a few events, in fact we came second to Aquinas. In 1972 after five years of hard work and planning we won the PSA Athletics trophy. For those of us in our last year of school it was a great day and largely due to Br Cronin’s vision and belief in his team of coaches and athletes.
Remembering Br Seaman
Having lived outside of WA since 1976, I did not visit the school that often. In 2012 I convinced my 2 brothers to join me for the 40th anniversary of my graduation from Trinity. I met many old friends and teachers but one reunion I will never forget. I walked up to Br. Seaman who I had not seen since leaving school and asked him if he remembered me. He reached into a folder and brought out a photo of the under 16 football team of 1970, he was our coach and we were undefeated that year. He pointed to me in the photo and said you played on the wing, then after a moment’s thought added, you were a left footer. I could not believe that after 40 years he could remember such details about one of the many hundreds of boys he taught.