Garry Prigg has been directly involved in business since 1976. Over that time he has been a long term business owner, Board Chairman, Board member, CEO, Advisor, Consultant, Innovator and Philanthropist.
From the mid 70’s to the 1987 he was a leader in the insurance and superannuation planning, structuring and risk industry. He is one of the great business and marketing innovators who developed some of Australia’s first specialist branded packages – Superannuation Funds for unit linked and capital guaranteed investment diversity strategies, life cover and income protection, House and contents for Victorian teachers unions, Health insurance cover and premiums tailored for Victorian teachers, Tax preferred savings bonds to be used as a deposit for first home buyers. Total & permanent disability and critical illness.
In 1984 Garry established Australia’s first property buying education and information service (The First Home Buyers Centre) for home and investment buyers which he ran until 2008. He wrote three books, “The First Home Buyers Guide” (x 2) and “The Successful Home Buyers Guide”. He was a regular writer on property for the then Herald and The Sun (biggest distribution in Australia).
He was involved in creating Australia’s first dedicated radio program about property in Melbourne called “The Herald Real Estate Hour”. For 24 years he provided valuable assistance to over 20,000 intending property buyers in Victoria who accessed his seminars, workshops, consultancies and books.
Dedication to Children with Cerebral Palsy and their Family
In 1987 his private passion commenced as a volunteer for babies and young children with cerebral palsy, and to support their families. The unique education services that started in 1987 for these children were forced to close in 1998 and again in early 2001. Garry stopped his own work for six months on both occasions to negotiate with Government and the community to have the service reestablished.
On July 2001, he established the Cerebral Palsy Education Centre (CPEC) as an independent stand-alone education service provider with its own Board of Management … “finally they were the masters of their own destiny.” He was elected as the Chairman of the Board, a position he held until July 2013 when he retired.
In 2001 the Centre provided services for 38 children. Had cash of $85,000 in the bank. Had a budget of $316,000 and rented a fifty year old run down building. In 2013 there were 112 children attending the services, and a budget of $2.1 million. It owned its own 750sqm purpose designed building, with total accumulated assets of around $3 million, and no debts.
In 2004 Garry started the fulfillment of his promise to the Cerebral Palsy Education Centre service founders’, staff and families to raise funds to build their own purpose designed building. In eight months he facilitated the raising of cash of nearly $550,000 plus products and services to the value of $150,000. In the following months he negotiated with the Victorian State Government and sourced a grant of $300,000 plus access and use of Education Department land by way of a License Agreement, to construct the building on the land in Glen Waverley, Victoria.
Garry took on the role of Project Manager for the construction of the building which commenced at the start of June 2005. The 500sqm purpose designed building was completed for access and use on October 2005. This was achieved in just four months … ahead of time and under budget.
In 2008 Garry retired from his property consulting business and with unanimous agreement by the Board, he was appointed to the full time position of CEO of Cerebral Palsy Education Centre, a position he held until he retired in July 2013.
The principal focus was to grow the education services both for the existing and additional preschool children and after school programs for primary and secondary students so they could continue to receive the specialist CPEC services. This required a significant amount of additional new funds. From 2001 until 2008, as a volunteer, Garry facilitated and coordinated the raising of nearly $800,000 from fundraising, donations and sponsorship.
As the CEO, between 2008 and his retirement in July 2013, he coordinated and oversaw the raising of nearly $4.6 million for the Centre during that time.
Garry was also Santa Claus for 24 years for the children and families at the annual Christmas celebration and graduation.
Garry has been acknowledged for his voluntary dedication to children with cerebral palsy and their families for over a quarter of a century.
National recipient of the 2007 Tattersall’s Award for Excellence & Achievement. Selected as the 2008 Herald Sun Pride of Australia Medal – Community Spirit. Received the Rotary Paul Harris Fellowship in 2011. Was inducted into Lions International as one of its Ambassador in 2013.
In addition, Garry has given untold hours as a community volunteer to numerous local communities and organisations – local cricket and football coaching, charity auctioneer, Church fetes, golf days and much more.
Post July 2013
Having retired in July 2013, by any measurement, Garry has been supremely successful in so many areas of business and life. He took some powerful advice from a very close friend who operates in over 60 countries. And the advice was … forget whatever success you have achieved in the past. Recreate who you want to be for now and the future. This was pivotal life changing advice. He also believed he was far to young to stop learning and living.