Speech given on 10 March 2011.
What can one say about this bloke? As Adam [Geha] has noted he has been here a long time. One of the early starters. Not on a daily basis. I mean he has had an office in the west, then Melbourne, then here a bit, and back to Perth.
Up and down and across like a yo-yo.
One thing you can say. He has been around. He has been there.
And that is something I know all the team believe in.
We have learnt a lot. Over the years. We’ve needed to. It has been a journey.
You can truly say that Alex put his stamp on Perth. We are tattooed with the lessons.
Some people have expressed surprise at the choice of Korda Mentha – known in the trade as receivers and administrators. What is the connection with EG?
I can tell you. Alex will be teaching them.
Based on the EG experience, there is not much more that they need to know.
Red Castle. There when we bought it. There when the sale slipped through last month.
Northbridge. Woolstores. We just did capital raisings to keep the banks at bay.
Then that little beauty: Toyota Fremantle. Been in the system five and a half years. And it is still going on. Crikey.
Do you see the connection now?
I have been waiting a few years now to give this speech. Fantastic you saw the opportunity. Our references were glowing. They offered you the job.
But seriously Alex, your optimistic presence – “she’ll be right” – will be missed.
I know politics has been your first love.
You have been mentored well. Ed Dermer, a member of the WA Legislative Council, has seen the future. He has been your big champion in the West.
I well remember thirty years ago when he was over here, as President of the WA Guild of Students, when he made a proud boast: “I have just recruited Belinda Neal to the Labor Party”.
Mate, I know you love what you are doing.
Can I make a confident prediction? You’ll go into state politics. You will be there. And I think you’ll do for the people of the West what you have handsomely done for EG.