2021 Annual Celebration Dinner – inductees announced

May 7, 2021

St Patrick’s College is excited to reveal the identities of the four men who will be honoured with prestigious awards at the 2021 Annual Celebration Dinner.

After being forced to cancel last year’s dinner due to COVID, we are thrilled to once again celebrate the successes of four men who have excelled in their chosen fields.

Two new College Legends will be inducted in 2021, along with one new Young Achiever and a former much-loved staff member will be honoured with the Facere et Docere (To Do and To Teach Award).

Due to the continuing and evolving restrictions, the tough decision has been made to postpone St Patrick’s College’s highly-anticipated Annual Celebration Dinner until early next year.


The inductees are:

Legend of the College:  Detective Sergeant Kevin Carson (SPC 1970-73) will be inducted as a Legend of St Patrick’s College. For nearly 29 years Detective Sergeant Carson has investigated sexual offences committed against children that included a number of high-profile cases in the Ballarat area. He has worked tirelessly with victims and families to provide ongoing support and assistance. Detective Sergeant Carson has provided a dedicated service to Victoria Police, and to the community for over 46 years. Kevin has also been an incredibly notable figure in Ballarat sporting circles, particularly through his involvement as a football umpire.

Legend of the College: Michael Kearney (SPC 1962-67) will be inducted as a Legend of the College in recognition of his outstanding and unparalleled volunteer service to the St Patrick’s College community over five decades. Michael is the only person on record to have been both president of the OCA Committee and Chairman of the SPC Foundation. Through various decades he has also held all senior executive positions of the OCA – president, secretary and treasurer. Amazingly he was secretary of the OCA in 1976, some 45 years ago, and only stepped down from the committee last year. He has also been involved in the SPC Foundation for more than 30 years.

Young Achiever of the Year: Andrew Groch (SPC 2008-13) will be recognised as our Young Achiever of the Year in honour of his incredible work as one of Australia’s best young musical conductors and arts administrators. Despite being just 25 years old Andrew has already conducted the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra and has worked with the world-renowned London Philharmonia Orchestra before COVID forced a return to Australia. Andrew is currently working as a project officer with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra.

Facere et Docere Award: Former Director of Boarding and Director of Community Development Mr Mark Waddington will be honoured with the staff award in recognition of his incredible achievements at the College between 2002 and 2011. In that time Mark helped rebuild the boarding community after it teetered on the brink of closure, oversaw major capital fundraising programs for projects such as the OCA Pavilion and the Jo Walter Field, managed the reintroduction of scholarship and bequest programs at the College and helped drive enrolment numbers to record levels. Mark was also instrumental in the rejuvenation of the College’s vaunted football program and ushered in a bright new era for the Old Collegians Association with a renewed focus on engagement and joy.

A gala function will be held early next year to honour these fine gentlemen and at this stage, tickets are sold out.


A full list of all previously inducted Legends of the College can be found at this link.