Dr Tony Cole awarded the Denis Bateman prize for 2017

Dr Tony Cole was awarded the Denis Bateman prize at a special event at the Ballarat Golf Club, on Thursday 15th June. Tony was presented with the award in a surprise event, hosted by the Ballarat South Rotary Club.


Dr. Tony Cole

 Dr Tony Cole being congratulated on his prize by Denis Bateman

Dr Tony Cole being congratulated on his prize by Denis Bateman

I was born in Melbourne, educated at Wesley College and awarded a Veterinary degree and Doctor of Philosophy at the University of Queensland.

With my wife I have a son and two daughters. The girls from an early age became involved in ballet which fired my involvement in theatre. I am a vet by profession and was a partner at the Eureka Veterinary Practice, my specialty was birds.  I still utilize my skills at the Greyhounds every week. I was secretary of the Ballarat Ballet Guild for 5 years, promoting dance in Ballarat.

Over the past 37 years I have been heavily involved providing video production, equipment and playing music for many local dance schools (7) and theatrical groups (6) both here and in Melbourne and for several local Primary & Secondary Schools. I was invited onto the Royal South Street Board in 1984 to help with the performing arts competitions, and am still an active member and board director.

I was President twice in 1989 and 1990 and again in 1997 and 1998. I was awarded Life Membership in 1999. I was a member of the Her Majesty’s Theatre Board for 10 years and
Chairman of RSS Dance for 30 years, growing it into the largest Dance Competition in Victoria.

I have always donated trophies for the Classical Ballet section and aggregate winners.  I have them specially crafted at the Sovereign Hill Foundry and hand made to be unique memoirs of Ballarat. I create production schedules for Dance that always contain a theme or story on some
historical aspect of dance for the interest of our volunteers.

I help in all sections of performing arts at RSS competitions and am always first into the theatre and last to leave.

I am the quintessential ‘Mr Fix it’ for any equipment.  I have built mobile technical desks,  the Chairman’s box,  automatic curtains,  a goods lift, phone system, video systems and several store-rooms . I also do electrical compliance testing on equipment for RSS and Uniting Care.
My sheds are full of "saved treasures" and I never wasted anything. I am extremely very dedicated to anything I do.

We now have 2 grandsons, and are busy visiting family in Queensland and Melbourne, but remain dedicated to helping the performing arts in Ballarat.  

Some may know that many years ago we were temporary foster parents. Then my wife worked as a Kindergarten teacher in Wendouree. For the last 20 years she has worked at Uniting Care on 2 important community projects,  and retired last year. I still volunteer at "Second Bite" for Uniting Care's "Breeze Way" program.  

Helping young performing artists to achieve and enjoy, is one of life's important goals.

I am Doctor Tony Cole.

 
 Brett Macdonald announcing the Denis Bateman Award

Brett Macdonald announcing the Denis Bateman Award

 Brett Macdonald, Dr Tony Cole and Denis Bateman

Brett Macdonald, Dr Tony Cole and Denis Bateman

 
 Dr Tony Cole accepting his award

Dr Tony Cole accepting his award

 Paula Nicholson, chair of Ballarat Arts Foundation and Denis Bateman

Paula Nicholson, chair of Ballarat Arts Foundation and Denis Bateman

 
 Paula Nicholson, chair of Ballarat Arts Foundation

Paula Nicholson, chair of Ballarat Arts Foundation

 Sam Henson, Rod Nicholls & Ian Howe

Sam Henson, Rod Nicholls & Ian Howe