Rick Pemberton, our new Mr Chips

How can a man’s 60-year love affair with Brighton Grammar, during which he had such a wonderful impact on so many staff, students and parents, be acknowledged in a few paragraphs? Of course it can’t. But I hope that the following words will provide those of you who have not had the privilege of knowing this great educator, leader and gentleman with some understanding of his outstanding contribution to our School.

There are so many elements to Rick’s character. He understands that relationships are vital to a successful and fulfilling life, including life at BGS. Rick will be remembered as a superb communicator. Whether it be offering wise advice, educating people based on our School’s rich history or simply sharing a laugh, boys, parents and colleagues have benefitted from his conversations.

Most significantly, though, Rick has made time to listen to those around him – regardless of how busy he has been. Over his 45 years as an employee at BGS, ‘Mr Pemberton’ was usually the first to arrive at work and the last to leave. Whether teaching in the classroom, coaching on the sporting field, carrying out administrative tasks or providing leadership, Rick has always approached school life with incredible energy and passion. His attention to detail is second to none, as is his understanding of the School and the boys. Rick’s love of tradition, gentlemanly manner and warm heart are just a few of the traits that make him such a special individual in our community.

Many of us have marvelled at stories of ‘legendary’ staff members throughout the School’s history. One name that always comes up is Harry Zachariah. Harry was fondly known as ‘the Mr Chips of Brighton Grammar’ because of his outstanding contributions to the School in the period 1942–2009. Although a modest man and a keen historian who would dispute this title, Rick Pemberton is our next Mr Chips,

Congratulations, Rick, on a truly wonderful career and thank you for everything you have given to us all!

Brendan Rahn
Junior School Teacher