John Moore Sharwood OA, supported by his loving wife Pam, has energy and drive which continues to amaze us all.
He is a leader in his community, where his dedication to the welfare and growth of the community has earned him great and deserved recognition. His friendly personality and sense of humor have made him well known and recognized as a dedicated leader in so many ways.
Kellock Lodge and John’s family and friends congratulate him on achieving the Order of Australia.
John is a member of a family equally well known, where his brother was Chancellor of the Anglican Diocese of Wangaratta, Head (Warden) of the Trinity College of the University of Melbourne and well known in the Anglican Diocese of Melbourne.
John was born on 17 April 1934, second son of George William Sharwood and Esther Hopetoun Sharwood, in Melbourne. He was educated at Surrey Hills State School, Mont Albert Central School and Wesley College, before attaining his Pharmacy Degree at the School of Pharmacy.
He and Pamela Frances Greene (also a Pharmacist) were married on 1st March 1958. They have three married children, Jane,David and Penelope.
Although the nomination of John for the Order of Australia is truly enmeshed in his selfless service to the communities within the Murrindindi Shire, prior to his permanent move to this Shire we are aware of, but certainly not surprised by John and Pam’s reputation as caring and dedicated Pharmacists, known to visit aged and infirm patients in Hospital, far beyond the normal call of professional responsibilities.
John and Pam commenced their partnership as pharmacists, in Whitehorse Road, Mitcham, in 1957 and continued that business for some 30 years, until their retirement in the late 1980’s. They then moved permanently to the Cathkin property, purchased some years earlier.
- John was heavily involved in the Mitcham Chamber of Commerce and the Rotary Club of Nunawading, where he was President in 1970/71.
- He was involved in shipping medical supplies and equipment to a New Guinea Hospital and in constructing extensions to the Martyr`s School in New Guinea, which involved several extended visits to that country-both as part of Rotary`s Fourth Avenue in Motion program.
- He was also Chair of Rotary District 9810 International Committee. He received a Paul Harris Fellowship Award from Rotary International in 1985.
Community activities while John was in business in the Mitcham precinct:
- Parent Groups at Yarra Valley Grammar School and Tintern Anglican Girls School
- as a member of the governing body of the Child and Family Network, formerly the Burwood Boys Home for some years
- helping to establish and then involvement in the Mitcham Chamber of Commerce
- as a member of Christ Church Anglican Church in Mitcham, he was the main organiser of the ” Old Folks Christmas Concert “.
Community Service in the Murrindindi Shire
When Pam & John moved permanently to the Alexandra area, their involvement with the community continued. Pam developed the beautiful garden at Cathkin, with help from John, which was often open for the Open Garden Weekends. John immersed himself in community activities, including Rotary.
At the Rotary Club of Alexandra, John continued as a leader and initiator and as a principal source of fellowship. John`s leadership emerged as:
- he instigated the Fundraising program to purchase land to extend the Alexandra Public Library and in the subsequent extension of that Library.
- In the Club`s annual Art Show, now in its 48thyear and recognised as one of the best regional art shows in Victoria, John has been Art Show Director on a number of occasions.
- Chair of the Special Events Committee over a number of years, arranging the town Australia Day celebrations and Christmas festival.
- Rotary Foundation Chair and Sergeant-at-arms on many occasions,
- John has been Rotary`s representative on the District Open Gardens Weekend Committee for many years, and has in fact chaired that committee for a number of years.
- His pivotal recognition as a devoted and untiring contributor to the Rotary tradition was recognised when he was honoured, in 2015, with a Sapphire pin to append to his Paul Harris Fellowship. This was a significant recognition to his role in Rotary and his 50 years of membership of the organisation.
While the above contribution of John to the community would of itself and by any measure of worthiness be sufficient for his nomination for this award, his significant contribution to many other facets of community activities provide the impetus for my nomination and for all of the referees who have more than gladly put their names to support this nomination.
In the general community of the Alexandra District, John has also shown his unbridled capacity for leadership and his outstanding community spirit:
- Member, Treasurer and now Chairman of the Yarck Rural Fire Brigade for at least the past 20 years. Whilst no longer actively fighting fires, he is the driving force behind the successful administration of the Brigade.
- Volunteer custodian, curator, gardener for the Cathkin Cemetery, which adjoined their Farm in Cathkin. Although with age, he has moved from the farm to Alexandra, (some 15 kilometres away), he is still the driver of all the activities, including the administration of the cemetery and the ongoing maintenance (including mowing and weeding). An unbelievable commitment.
- A leading light in the Alexandra Singers, a community singing group which provides entertainment to the Hospital, Aged Care establishments and concerts for the community.
- John was a leader within the Cathkin Landcare group in the upgrade of the old Catkin Railway reserve.
Considering all of the above, which are significant, his role onthe Board of Kellock Lodge, a not for profit Aged Care Facility located in Alexandra, is possibly his most satisfying and challenging role – one where the community benefits from his experience over the years of giving.
He has served in this voluntary role as a board member for 14 years now. For the past 6 years, he has been Chairman. Kellock Lodge is an Aged Care facility with 50 high care beds and 14 Independent Living Units. A facility which has provided excellence in aged care over the years, has kept up to date and profitable, with all of its beds having been built or renovated within the last 7 years. It is an institution which is strongly supported by the town and district.
John’s nominees for the Order of Australia recognition, indicate that they are in awe of his goodness and his capacity and cannot imagine a more worthy recipient of this award.
Congratulations John Moore Sharwood – OA