Long serving Ararat doctor Derek Pope was awarded a Life Governorship of East Grampians Health Service at the annual general meeting in late 2017.
Dr Pope has worked as a doctor at the Ararat Medical Centre for more than 30 years, first arriving in Ararat to work as what was then called a General Practition Registrar in 1985.
He was invited to join the Ararat Medical Centre practice and as a result, he returned to Ararat in 1986.
During his time in Ararat Dr Pope has worked in anaesthetics and obstetrics as well as general GP work.
Dr Pope was a member of the East Grampians Health Service Board for many years and has been visiting Willaura Healthcare since the late Dr Graeme Bertuch retired, providing medical services to patients, residents and community members.
He has a great interest in amateur theatre and once attended a patient in urgent care dressed as ‘Fagin’ from the musical ‘Oliver’ – complete with beard.
On receiving his Life Governorship, Dr Pope thanked the Board president Matthew Wood, board members and EGHS chief executive Nick Bush for what he described as an ‘unexpected award’.
“It is a great honour to receive this,” he said.
“I don’t think people realise how lucky we are to have the hospital we have and lucky that we have the working relationship between the medical services, paramedic services and nursing services.”
The life governorship award is one of the highest honours the health service gives out.