What a wonderful guy. Might we all have such quiet modesty, magnanimity and achievement written on our face when we’re getting on a little.
Heartfelt congratulations to David Bussau on his long overdue recognition – he has just been made Senior Australian of the Year. He is a remarkable fellow who was a builder in 1974 when cyclone Tracey blew down Darwin. He decided to help out and hightailed it up there with his team to help rebuild the place. That led him a little further north to help out in Indonesia where he was one of the pioneers of micro-credit. Muhammad Yunus has got a lot of the credit for his own pioneering of micro-credit – including a Nobel Prize – but it’s not clear from a quick read of the Wikipedia entry on microfinance that he ‘outranks’ our own man in the pioneering of micro-credit stakes.
Anyway, again according to Wikipedia Opportunity International which Bussau co-founded “now serves over one million clients annually and expects to be serving 2 million by 2010, and 12 million by 2015.”
Kind of surprising that he didn’t crack the big one of Australian of the Year rather than the lesser Senior Australian of the year. Even more surprising that he’s got an AM for his services, about as low a ranking honour as you can get – lower at least than an AO or an AC. Perhaps I should have said ‘unfortunate’ rather than ‘surprising’. I guess he might have climbed a bit further up the ladder if he’d bankrolled winning the America’s Cup and ripped a few billion off his fellow citizens in the process.
(The guy doesn’t even have a stub on Wikipedia for goodness’ sake!)
Anyway Mr Bussau, I for one am in awe of your achievement and it’s wonderful it’s received a little more recognition.