Class of ’75 reunites 40 years on

THE 1975 BACHELOR OF LAWS GRADUATING CLASS HELD ITS 40TH ANNIVERSARY REUNION ON FRIDAY 20 MARCH 2015. THE REUNION WAS HELD AS CLOSE AS POSSIBLE TO THE ACTUAL DATE OF GRADUATION ON 22 MARCH 1975.

Class of ’75 reunites 40 years on

From left to right: Jill Matthews, Ruth McColl, Terry Salmon, Anne Quirk and Tim Stack

This was the third reunion of the class of 1975, having first reunited on our 20th anniversary in 1995 and again on our 30th anniversary in 2005. This year a dinner was held at the Union, University and Schools Club, a splendid venue allowing for informality, but also providing a gracious and elegant environment in which to gather and table-hop throughout the night.

Our 1975 graduating class was fortunate to have then Prime Minister, the Honourable Gough Whitlam QC, BA, LLB, as a speaker at its graduation ceremony. The reunion organising committee procured a copy of the Prime Minister’s graduation address from the archives of the Whitlam Institute. The Prime Minister had launched us on our new professional lives by outlining the legislation his government had passed, which he was confident would give us the “chance to participate in a great process of social change and reform”. We all mused as to how that prediction had come to bear in our career paths.

As part of the preparation for the reunion, graduates were asked to provide an outline of what they had done over the years since graduation; their life highlights, their interests, their current circumstances and their plans for the future. They were also asked to provide ‘then’ and ‘now’ photographs. These were compiled into a PowerPoint presentation and played throughout the night.

With the emphasis on informality, a jukebox was organised, programmed only to play hits from the graduating year. This was cause for nostalgia and gathered many people around the jukebox.

While no formal speeches were planned, that did not stop this legal crowd. Towards the end of the evening, one graduate seized the microphone and kicked off a series of reminiscences to the delight of all attendees, creating a great atmosphere of communality. With so much goodwill and enjoyment generated by the evening, it was agreed that the next reunion would be held on the 45th anniversary instead of waiting until the 50th. Indeed, there was enthusiastic support for a reunion every five years.

A copy of the PowerPoint presentation was circulated not only to those who had attended, but to all graduates for whom the alumni office had contact details. Everyone was encouraged to ‘save the date’ in 2020 and keep the alumni office advised of their contact details.

The reunion committee consisted of David Fairlie, Annabella Fletcher, Justice Ian Harrison, Bill Koeck, and Justice Ruth McColl AO. The committee is indebted to Jessica Sullivan for her enormous assistance in organising the reunion.