Shining the light on Tom Roberts

In 2012, Tom Roberts, a valued client of Woodward Nhill was awarded the Order of Australia in recognition of his service to medicine, community and the Royal Australian Air Force Association. In this article, we reflect on Tom’s achievements, his families, and how he spends his days now. Thank you Tom.

Delivering 10,000 babies during his career, Ballarat obstetrician and community leader Tom Roberts has touched a lot of hearts.

In recognition of service to the community through medicine and his work as president of the Ballarat branch of the Royal Australian Air Force Association, Tom was awarded the medal of the Order of Australia in 2012.

His long list of achievements and involvement spans much of Ballarat’s business, sporting and community life, with service to organisations including Ballarat Health Services, the Art Gallery of Ballarat, Ballarat Harriers Club, the Commemorative Days Committee, Sportsmen’s Association of Australia and many more.

In 2011 he published Wingless, the definitive list of Australian airmen who were held as prisoners of war. He nominated his work as president of the Royal Australian Air Force Association and long career as an obstetrician and gynaecologist as some of his most significant achievements.

On receiving the order of Australia in 2012, Mr Roberts said, “It’s a great honour, but really the greatest achievement in my life has been marrying my wife and producing our children and grandchildren.”

Tom and his wife have five children who are all grown up now and independently have their own achievements:

Alison: Mother of three and has multiple degrees and diplomas and currently has a Melbourne University staff attachment in religious education.

Geoffrey: ex RAAF Squadron Leader and Roulette is now an international consultant in aviation and mining safety measures.

Jennifer: Following a long stint with the Property Council of Australia, is now a Community Relations representative with Ryman Healthcare.

Peter:  Physiotherapist and manipulative therapist and keen athlete, hockey player and sports coach.

Bruce: Newscaster for WIN TV for Victoria, Tasmania and areas of NSW.

Tom says he has never kept a numerative total of private baby deliveries, but averages would suggest between 8 to 10 thousand. However, Tom feels his wife “who had to put up with the lifetime of disruptions” always claimed it was nearer the latter. Then there were, of course, the public hospital deliveries to add to that number too.

These days Tom spends his time gardening and maintaining the house. He is a prolific reader and researcher, mainly on military and aviation matters.

When asked what advice Tom would give to the younger generation about hard work and success he said, “My maternal grandmother always said” ‘The Lord helps those who help themselves’ (Not by stealing!!!), so I was brought up on a culture of trying and effort. I still recall the many little sayings for application and effort. Percy Cerutty summed it up with:” Work does things, Impossibilities take time. Miracles take a little longer”.”

We would like to thank Tom for allowing us to share this article and the update on his life now and for his kind words about Paul and the team at Woodward Nhill. “Paul has always been a tower of strength with respected management and friendly advice May he (and we!) continue to prosper”.

Extracts of this article were taken from the Ballarat Courier.

We look forward to working with you to achieve your goals.