Huge congratulations to our Honorary Director who was acknowledged for his service to the community and was named in the Australia Day Honours List as a recipient of the Medal of the Order of Australia.
On Australia Day, our very own Kent Mayo said “I got a nice shock”* when honoured with the Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM), “For Service to the Community of Uralla”.
I’ve been aware of much of Kent’s incredible contributions for many years, since he and I joined the staff of Uralla Central School in 1987, both as Assistant Principals. His creative flair, love of teaching, and infectious sense of fun, “had the “joint jumping!” With musical maestro Wendy Nano, he created the champion “Orphans and Urchins” Children’s Choir, 1987-1998, … unforgettable experiences for those children and their parents, still talked about today, never to be forgotten.
Kent’s creativity and commitment as a volunteer is just extraordinary. I prised a C.V. out of him. Here’s a brief outline.
Creator and Director Uralla’s infamous “Mrs O’Malley’s Magnificent Music Hall” 1976-1988, attracting 3000 patrons each year, all proceeds to local community organisations.
Member of the Board of Arts North West, and of the Friends of NERAM.
Member of Uralla Tourism Committee, and the Creative Village Committee, and now UTEC.
Coach for Uralla entries in Speech and Drama Sections of Armidale Eisteddfod.
Coach of Uralla Junior Cricket, (“Sunny Jim C.C.”), Armidale District, and Northern Tablelands Juniors. And, of course, instigator of Uralla Historical Society, labourer on the restoration projects of all three of our buildings, and Hon Museum Director 1985 till 2023.
Kent insisted that I emphasise that all his volunteer work has involved great team work, and he should really share the OAM with wife Annie and all the hundreds of dedicated volunteers he’s worked with over so many productive years.
“Okay, often I’ve been “Captain” of a team, but that really means just doing the steering, not the hard yakka! So, I owe so many others” he said.
Committee Member UHS
I asked Kent to explain “nice shock”.
- I had a brother Geoffrey (“Geoffo”), disabled since birth. Whenever he got a pleasant surprise, which wasn’t all that often, he’d say “I got a nice shock!” Now I say it, but also not very often. Kent.
The Millers’ Tales – SUMMER 2023