Honoring 30 Years of Excellence: The Joseph Kirby (1977) Legacy Shines On

Following the sudden illness and untimely death of former Ormond student Joe Kirby in 1992, his friends contributed donations to enable Ormond College’s establishment of the Joseph Kirby Fund. 

This was initiated by Joe’s friends as a fitting, tangible and practical tribute to a much respected friend. It provides, in perpetuity, acknowledgement of an Ormond student through the annual award of the Joseph Kirby Prize for academic excellence.  

Growing up in Bendigo, Joe resided at Ormond from 1977-1979 studying Arts/ Law; and after graduating in 1984, commenced in legal practice. 

Joe’s love of languages, great interest in history, the classics and passion for music  reflected his commitment  to life-long learning. Even when he no longer resided in College, Joe’s strong Catholic faith underpinned a deep spirituality resulting in an ongoing association with the Ormond chapel and choir.

 Joe’s serious side was balanced by his charm, self-deprecating dry wit and his talents as a raconteur. His friends recall the gentleman, Joe’s loyalty, great sense of fun, patience and persistence. 

 30 years on, it is to the great satisfaction of Joe’s friends and family that the Joe Kirby Prize continues to be awarded in his memory, thereby acknowledging and encouraging a committed high achieving Ormond student. It is with both pride and fondness we share Joe’s story. 


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