Life Members

KAREN STOKES - Life Member 2013

Karen Stokes has been involved in the Australian Boarding Schools Association (ABSA) or its affiliates since 1982.

Two weeks after she married in 1982 Richard joined the boarding staff of St Peters Lutheran College in Brisbane and since that time they have lived and breathed boarding, with Karen supporting her husband Richard Stokes, the current Chief Executive Officer of ABSA.

The Queensland Residential Schools Staff Association (QRSSA) was formed in 1987 and was absorbed by the Australian Boarding Schools Association in 2007.   

From 1987 Karen was one of the group’s strongest supporters, helping Richard with many of the tasks he took on such as Treasurer, Newsletter Editor and President.  Her role in the background, especially in the production of Lights Out or its previous version Boarding Today was instrumental to the publication's success. 

In 1994 the then President of QRSSA wrote “Karen Stokes over the past months has taken on a most important role of the newsletter preparation and I am sure that you have noticed the professional finished product.   The Association would like to publicly voice our appreciation of this work”.

From ABSA’s formation in 2007, and even before that, Karen took on the role of Conference coordinator, managing registration before and during every conference, attended to people’s needs, and ensuring people were never left on their own. Karen did this in her own time.  Even to this day she continues to proof read each edition of Lights Out.

Karen’s support of her husband, Richard Stokes, in all matters associated with ABSA has been exceptional.

DR TIMOTHY HAWKES OAM - Life Member 2018

Dr Tim Hawkes was born in South Australia, but when his family moved overseas he became a boarder at King's School Rochester in Kent where he was appointed School Captain before going to Durham University. For fifteen years Dr Hawkes worked in boarding schools in both England and Australia, eventually becoming Senior Boarding Master at Knox Grammar School in Sydney. 

Whilst at Knox Dr Hawkes established an informal boarding schools network amongst independent schools in New South Wales before being appointed Principal of St Leonard's College in Melbourne in 1989. Dr Hawkes was appointed Headmaster of The King's School, Parramatta, Australia's oldest boarding school and the largest protestant boarding school in New South Wales in 1998. 

A strong contributor to educational debate, Dr Hawkes has been active in promoting the virtues of residential education in Australia. He set up and chaired The Australian Residential Schools’ Association (TARSA) in 2000 to support the development of the first specifically written training course for boarding schools, "Duty of Care" which became the defacto training expected of boarding staff across Australia in many boarding schools. 

In 2007 TARSA and the Australian Boarding Staff Association merged to become the Australian Boarding Schools Association, and Dr Tim Hawkes was elected the inaugural chairman, a position he held until 2013. Since the first edition of the Duty of Care training course was published the books have been updated twice, and the most recent edition has become a requirement for all boarding staff as part of the Boarding Standard for Australian Schools and Residences. 

Dr Hawkes was also instrumental in the development of the Boarding Standard for Australian Schools and Residences, writing the first discussion paper for schools which formed the basis of the work then undertaken by Standards Australia to complete this Standard. In January 2014 Dr Hawkes was awarded the Order of Australia Medal for his service to Boarding Schools.

ROSALYN LINDSAY - Life Member 2019

Rosalyn has been the Chair of the Tasmanian Division of the Australian Boarding Schools Association since 2008 when it was first formed, and as such has been a National Board member for all of this time.  In 2017 she was appointed Vice-Chair of the Board.

Rosalyn’s Service to Boarding

Rosalyn joined the Boarding House at Canberra Girls’ Grammar School on the 21st July  1997.  She had  already “semi-retired” after her years of service as a teacher at St Mary’s College, Adelaide and then as Deputy Principal at Woodlands Church of England Girls’ Grammar School in Adelaide In 1989 she was appointed Principal of Presbyterian Ladies’ College  (PLC) in Armidale NSW and held that position until the end of 1997.

When Ros retired from PLC Armidale and returned to her home city of Adelaide, she was working part-time with “Dial an Angel” which could not be more apt. When she went to work at Canberra Girls’ Grammar School in the Boarding House, she definitely was an “angel” - the Principal at the time persuaded Rosalyn to come out of retirement to care for the boarder girls.  

The Boarding House had gone through some challenging times and Rosalyn was responsible for steadying the ship and setting the boarding house on a new and successful course.

Ros tried to retire again, this time to Hobart, at the end of 2005 but it lasted only 2 months. By February 2006, Ros was back at Canberra Girls Grammar School in the Boarding House being flown up from Hobart on a week by week basis, until a permanent replacement was found.  She successfully retired in June 2006, but was again called to assist at St Michael’s CollegiateSchool as Acting Head of Boarding for a year in 2011.