Bill Noonan – What is Retirement?

noel & Val Henry with Bill Noonan

Guest Speaker, Bill Noonan OAM. Bill is married to Colleen, has 2 children, 4 grandkids and has lived in Greensborough for 48 yrs. Bill has had a full and diverse career and personal life. Beginning in the transport industry, he was a member of the TWU on a pathway to Vic Branch Secretary and Federal President. He was a Commissioner of the National Transport Commission and member of the Victorian Road Freight Advisory Council. Bill retired fulltime in 2009. He became involved in health and was Founding Director of the Institute for Breathing and Sleep,. He was instrumental in the development of the Healthbreak Program, a confidential workplace screening activity monitoring worker’s health issues. He was appointed by the Federal Government as a member of the Department of Health and Ageing Reference Group to develop the first Male Health Policy. Bill has served on the Road Safety and Traffic Authority, Vic Roads Advisory Board and more.. In 2006 he received an OAM for service to the Transport Industry. Bill is an Australia Day Ambassador and a founding Director and now Chairman if the Victoria Police Blue Ribbon Foundation. He is a former President of the Victorian Road Runners Club and life member, has run 24 marathons and is a loyal supporter of
the Western Bulldogs.
In his presentation entitled ‘Retirement… What Retirement’, he highlighted actions we can take to improve our sense of well being in our senior years. He suggested keeping a diary and writing your life’s history as he has done. For him it culminated in his book ‘Retirement…. What Retirement’. He advised to just get out and do things; keeping a link with young people is good for well being and not to forget that seniors bring a lot of ‘wisdom’ to the table. Interaction with people through organizations is a positive step. He asked himself ‘How do I get involved with Blue Ribbon?’ He assisted in writing the history of Yarraville. Seniors are an untapped community resource and obviously a person who is always thinking outside the square, Bill offered two new ideas he has where seniors could contribute successfully: assisting young people to get their 120 hrs of driving experience before they can get a license and retired people who are musical playing music in schools to close the gap that exists.
On behalf of the Club, Noel thanked Bill for his time and his most interesting and stimulating presentation. But then…..Bill had an announcement, he awarded Noel with a special award from the Victorian Police Blue Ribbon Foundation, which took Noel completely by surprise. It was the Foundation Chairman’s Medal warded to Noel Henry OAM – ‘In recognition of exceptional service to the people of Victoria through a variety of charitable organisations and in particular Rotary International and the Victorian Police Blue Ribbon Foundation.’ This was one of those special moments that those of us present don’t get to experience very often!!