GRADUATION DAY: Philip Atherton OAM receives the honorary award of Companion of the University for his service to the sugar industry and local educator sector.
GRADUATION DAY: Philip Atherton OAM receives the honorary award of Companion of the University for his service to the sugar industry and local educator sector. Max Fleet

Bundy uni stalwart remembered

BUNDABERG man and CQUniversity stalwart Philip Atherton was remembered for his work in the education sector at his funeral at Christ Church Anglican Church, Woongarra St, on Monday.

Philip passed away earlier this month in the care of the Friendlies Hospital.

Philip was born in Toowoomba in 1931 and later gained a bachelors degree with honours in engineering and a post graduate diploma in sugar technology from the University of Queensland.

His career in sugar technology and research lasted more than 40 years and included 30 years with the Bureau of Sugar Experiment Stations.

Alongside this, he had a lifelong passion for regional education and spent 30 years as board member and chair of councils associated with Bundaberg TAFE and Wide Bay Institute of TAFE.

Philip and Lynelle Atherton in earlier times.
Philip and Lynelle Atherton in earlier times.

His work was recognised by the award of an AOM in 2005 for service to education through the administration of tertiary and further education institutions, and to the sugar industry.

He was also awarded Australia's centenary medal for voluntary service to education.

Philip was a founding member of the Bundaberg Higher Education Committee formed in 1985, which successfully lobbied for a university campus in Bundaberg.

He maintained an active association with CQUniversity Bundaberg as a member of the Campus Advisory Committee and Region Engagement Committee.

In recent years he was a vocal supporter of the development of an engineering course in Bundaberg which gained support from the Vice Chancellor and University Executive.

The graduation ceremony this month will see the first graduates from that engineering course.

He was made a Companion of the University in 2016.

Never afraid to speak his mind, Philip was also an exceptionally kind and gentle man. Everyone who worked alongside him had only positive things to say about his passion for engineering education but also the considered and considerate way in which he prosecuted that passion.

He will be greatly missed by all at CQUniversity Bundaberg and those others who were fortunate to work with him or call him a friend.

PROF ANDY BRIDGES



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