Gallagher brothers receive citys highest honours


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24 November 2008

Hamilton City Council has bestowed its highest honours on two of the Waikato's most well-known businessmen and community leaders, brothers John and Bill Gallagher.

The Freedom of the City was bestowed on the Gallaghers on Saturday night at the Gallagher Group's 70th Birthday celebrations.

Hamilton Mayor Bob Simcock says "the award of Freedom Holder of the City is a rare honour given to people who have made a significant and sustained contribution to the city. Well known for their business excellence and their longstanding contributions to the community, both John and Bill Gallagher are extremely well-deserving of this recognition. Their work over the past several decades has been many and varied from business innovation to community governance, professional fellowships, patronage of education and the arts and regional leadership."

Over the past 20-30 years, under the leadership of John and Bill Gallagher, the Gallagher Group has developed into Hamilton's largest and most successful private company. A major employer throughout the region, the Group is extremely competitive in the global sphere and in the process of going global has become a shareholder of many businesses around the world.

Through the organisation and as individuals the Gallaghers have committed much of their time and resources to making a difference to the community.

The Group's association with the University of Waikato has supported events like the Great Race and Great Race Ball, facilities like the Academy of Performing Arts and ongoing projects like the commercialisation of innovative ideas through Waikato Link, research contracts and student placements. Through both personal work and financial assistance the Gallaghers have also enabled the development of the Don Llewellyn Sports Pavillion and the ongoing work of the Sir Edmund Hillary Scholarship.

John's involvement in the community is extensive. He is a longstanding member of a number of commercial and not-for profit governance boards including Habitat for Humanity, the Order of St John and Enterprise New Zealand. He has also previously served as Deputy Mayor, a Waikato Regional Councillor, a Hamilton City Councillor, a WEL Energy Trust Board Member and the founding president of Tourism Waikato. In the education sphere John has been a member of the University Council since 1990, served as Pro-Chancellor and Chancellor and Chairman of the fundraising Waikato University Foundation.

Bill Gallagher has distinguished himself through a vast number of high calibre professional fellowships. In 2004 he was inducted into the National Business Review Hall of Fame. Previous to that his services included elected fellowships to influential organisations like IPENZ, the NZ Institute of Management and the Institute of Directors.

Simcock says, "The award is a testament to the immense impacts their work has had on our business sector and our community."

Past recipients of the award have been:

1948  Dame Hilda Ross MP (deceased)
1953  HD Caro
1960  4th Medium Battery RNZA and Waikato Regiment RNZAC
1962  Royal New Zealand Airforce Station Te Rapa
1973  Dame Te Atairangikaahu (deceased)
1985  Dr Don Llewellyn (deceased)
1985  Dr Denis Rogers (deceased)
1989  Sir Ross & Lady Jansen
1991  Mike Minogue
1991  Dr Anthony Trevelyan Rogers
1998  Margaret Evans
2001  Dame Malvina Major
2005  Brian Perry
2005  Ted Armstrong


Name: Bob Simcock
Designation: Hamilton Mayor
Tel (Direct): 021 991 071
Name: Christine Watson
Designation: Communication Executive
Tel (Direct): 07 838 6509
Mobile: 021 791 264
Fax (Direct): 07 838 6761
Page reviewed: 24 Nov 2008 12:00am