This week we all are saddened by the loss of one of our great mates, Hall Rotarian, Michael Brown, taken from us just days before his 60th birthday.
Michael was born in England to Australian parents. The family moved back to Australia in 1956 so his father could take up a position at the John Curtin School at the ANU. They lived near the university in what was then the outskirts of Canberra in the suburb of O’Connor. Michael remembered travelling to Ginninderra Creek as a boy for family picnics.
His early years were spent first at St Joseph’s Primary School in O’Connor and then at Daramalan before studying Political Science/History and later Political Science at ANU.
Michael started work in 1972 with the Department of Foreign Affairs and moved to the Department of the Special Minister of State in the newly-formed Protective Services Co-ordination Centre working in the Counter Terrorism Branch in 1978.
In 1982 he entered the Department of Defence as Executive Officer in the Policy Secretariat, and ANZUS and UN Branches, followed by a move to The Parliament of Australia as Deputy Controller of Security, and later Private Secretary to the Minister for Defence.
He had a very interesting four to five years leading up to ACT self government in 1984-87, as the Senior Private Secretary to the Commonwealth Minister for Territories. Michael then moved to the ACT Government initially as the Director of ACT Consumer Affairs Bureau with responsibility for fair trading, then as Manager for Parking Operations.
Michael then spent some time with the Commonwealth Attorney General’s Department first with the Law Enforcement Policy Branch then with the Federal Justice Office and National Crime Authority as Director of the Drugs Unit. He was then promoted to the Australian Institute of Criminology as the Corporate Manager.
In 1993 he took a Graduate Diploma in Religion Studies and later a Masters in Theology at the Australian Catholic University and in 1997 joined the National Council of Churches in Australia as the Associate General Secretary and Director, Christian World Service. He also had a role with the Australian Catholic Bishops’ Committee for Ecumenical and Interfaith Relations in the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference.
In 2001 Michael and his wife Pam also formed their own company, Intellumen Pty Ltd, providing organisational consultancy services specialising in the psychological assessment of occupational suitability, particularly in senior or security-designated positions.
As a Rotarian with the Rotary Club of Hall, Michael made a significant contribution to the everyday operations of the club. He was a man deeply concerned for the wellbeing of those less fortunate in the community and was most recently instrumental in the clubs donation to help with the Holy Cross Foodbank service in Hackett.
An active Rotarian, Michael held various positions within the club between 2003 and 2008, most notably as President in 2005/06.
Michael passed away at 11:15pm on June 20th with his family by his side. He leaves behind his wife Pam (also a Rotarian with the Rotary Club of Hall) and six children.