Ken Williamson 2017 HCC Civic Award Recipient
Ken Williamson, McKenzie Centre's Board of Trustees' Chair person was awarded a Hamilton City Council Civic Award in 2017.
Ken Williamson has made his life about service to others. For many decades, he has actively contributed, on a voluntary basis, to a wide variety of organisations in the social service, education, health, disability and sporting sectors in the Waikato/Bay of Plenty area, and nationally as well, with a list too extensive to highlight here.
Perhaps most importantly, Ken brings to his many and various roles a deep sense of compassion, empathy and a genuine desire to make a positive difference in the lives of other people.
Since 1995, Ken has been a member of the McKenzie Centre Trust, the governing body of Hamilton’s noted McKenzie Centre, an early childhood intervention pre-school for children aged up to six years, which was established in 1984. This is an impressive tenure of some 22 years, which well and truly shows his outstanding dedication to McKenzie Centre.
Ken is currently the chairperson of the Trust, and has been for the past three years. He has also been the licensee for our Early Childhood License with the Ministry of Education for over a decade. One of Ken’s most admirable attributes is his genuine love and compassion for the children and families who attend the Centre, as well as the sincere care and support he offers to its staff. He is a regular and welcome visitor to the Centre and loves to interact with our families and team on a very personal level, which is very much appreciated by them. Ken is McKenzie Centre’s most ardent and committed advocate, and his vocal endorsement of the work we do for children and families in our community has been of enormous benefit to the Centre in a myriad of ways. It is not an exaggeration to say that McKenzie Centre would not be in the great shape it is today without the benevolent and dedicated support of Ken.
Ken brings to the Trust significant expertise and experience in governance and strategic thinking, as developed during his lengthy terms in a variety of Trustee and Director roles. His laudable management skills have been honed from many years in the corporate sector, particularly at Crombie Lockwood in Hamilton (formerly Law, Mooney, Williamson, a very successful insurance brokering firm that he helped found).
Ken actively supports the governance of many community organisations, either by serving as a trustee or energetically encouraging and supporting other business leaders to become involved as governors, to make a difference in the community. He genuinely believes that this develops both the individual and the organisation, to achieve greater good. His circle of influence is vast and he uses this, deliberately and wisely, to bring about civic good.
One of Ken’s biggest heroes is that great New Zealander, the late Sir Roy McKenzie, for whom McKenzie Centre is named. Ken has embraced Sir Roy’s kiwi-can-do philosophy about philanthropy, and practices this every day in his service to others. He also shares Sir Roy’s traits of humility, enthusiasm, and respect for others. We know one of the highlights of Ken’s life of service was meeting Sir Roy in person. As Sir Roy served as a role model to him, Ken’s example of service to the community has encouraged many others to get involved to help others in our country.
By recognising Ken Williamson with a Hamilton City Council Civic Award, Hamilton is acknowledging his truly remarkable, selfless service and commitment to many worthy organisations and individuals over a very long period of time. Ken would be the last person to want any fuss made of him. He is a quiet achiever who just likes to get on with the job. If Ken is involved, you can count on him to make things happen.