Chairman's Report

30 June 2017


The Society is most grateful for the Vice-Regal patronage it is accorded by His Excellency General The Honourable David Hurley AC CSC Governor of New South Wales. His interest in the Society’s work and his great support are much appreciated.


The Society is appreciative for the enthusiastic involvement of our President Mr Donald McDonald AC in our activities and we appreciate the support Mrs McDonald AO provides.


It was with great pleasure that the Society accepted an invitation from His Excellency General The Honourable David Hurley to present the awards for 2015-2016 on Friday 7 October 2016. The warm hospitality extended by His Excellency and Mrs Hurley following the ceremony was greatly appreciated by the recipients and guests.


The Society’s 139th Annual General Meeting was conducted on Monday 5 December 2016, when Councillors and Office Bearers were elected for the ensuing twelve months.


A Special General Meeting on Monday 7 March 2016 adopted several small, but significant updating changes, to the Society’s 2010 Constitution 2010. These changes were recorded and accepted by the NSW Department of Fair Trading.


The Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) was inaugurated in 2013 with a requirement that all charities within the Commonwealth must be registered with the Commission. For several decades previously the Society had been registered under NSW Law as a registered charity.

With the national register in place, the Society submitted an application and received recognition (ABN 68581296689). The Society’s Registration, commenced in 2013 has continued through the succeeding years.


The Society’s Audited Balance Sheet as at 30 June 2017 and its Income and Expenditure Account for the year then ended 30 June 2017 appear at the back of 2016/17 annual report.


The healthy financial position was only achieved through the generosity of those donors who are listed later in this report. The New South Wales Government is a long time annual helper.

In addition, the NSW Roads and Maritime Services through its “Partnership Programme” provides the funds for the calligraphy services for the certificates presented.

A donation was also received from the Employees of the NSW Fire Brigades Relief & Welfare Fund Incorporated.

2016-2017 AWARDS

The awards presented for 2016-2017, described in this Annual Report, comprise 1 Galleghan Award, 3 Gold Medals, 11 Silver Medals, 25 Bronze Medals and 3 Certificates of Merit.

In addition, during the year, 13 Letters of Commendation were sent out. To all recipients, the Society conveys thanks, admiration and congratulations on behalf of the people of New South Wales. As appears later in this Annual Report, His Excellency will also present a Bronze Medal on behalf of the Royal Humane Society of Australasia Inc. To a New South Wales resident for humane actions in Queensland.


A warm relationship continues with our kindred Royal Humane Societies in the Commonwealth of Nations. This has also been developed with the Australian Bravery Association and the Foundation for Civilian Bravery Sri Lanka.

Each year we make the NSW submission to the RHS in London for the “bravest of the brave” award, The Stanhope Gold Medal, with nine of our nominations being successful since 1963.

The Royal Humane Society of Canada arranged for the Lt Governor of Manitoba to present our silver medal to a recipient, Mrs. Michael Learned (Case 2009-09), who has moved there after being awarded by the Royal Humane Society of NSW for her bravery here.


We welcome four new Councillors this year. Mr. Dominic MORGAN ASM, CEO Ambulance Service of NSW (ably represented by Chief Superintent M. Bray), a distinguished architect Mr. David Turner, Commissioner P. Baxter, NSW Fire & Rescue and Commissioner M. Fuller NSW Police Force.

Continuing as auditor for the Society is Mr Mark O’Connor BComm CA CIA, a partner of Cutcher & Neale.


On the 12 June, 2016, the Sunday of the Queen’s Birthday weekend, the Governor and Mrs Hurley opened Government House to the public to celebrate the occasion. His Excellency also invited some half-dozen of the charities of which he is Patron to establish a presence on and around the verandah, looking out onto the garden. This with the accompanying music of the Police Band created a festive air in beautiful surroundings. The organisations included The Royal Flying Doctor Service, the Royal Historical Society, the Royal Far West Society and ourselves. Each presented a display which explained the work they do. The RFDS, for instance, set up an equipped aircraft with a uniformed pilot and nurse explaining their equipment and operations to those who came aboard.

We and our neighbours, the Royal Historical Society and the Royal Far West, explained our activities from our “manned stalls” displaying colourful posters and literature. Our Society had the assistance of volunteers including Councillors, Office Bearers and uniformed service members from the Police, Fire and Ambulance Services in our presentation.

The Society’s theme addressed to the public, was:


Nominate a Hero because proper recognition:
Encourages Humane Actions
Good Citizenship
and it says


There remains no shortage of heroes in the State of New South Wales. Ordinary people rising to meet extraordinary challenges bravely. Such actions deserve public recognition as part of the community’s thanks and as an encouragement to others to follow the same spirit when life is at risk and they can help.

Alywnne Rowlands AO