Terry Power, A Power in Banking

One hundred and seven boys came through the new school’s gates on Canterbury Rd on opening day in early February 1950.  One of those, in lowly 5th Grade, was Terry Power.  Little did his classmates or teachers realise at the time that this boy was destined to become a power in Australian investment banking.

Even to Terry, the road ahead was not immediately clear, because after matriculating in 1958, he spent the next two years as an apprentice pharmacist before realising that counting out dollars was more appealing than counting out pills. He pursued a degree in accountancy at night school and honed his skills with ten years as an accountant, first in manufacturing then in construction.

Terry spent the next four years as CEO of a legal company (Herbert Geer and Rundle), before being approached by Bankers Trust Australia to establish a retail funds management arm within the bank.  With the success of this business his career accelerated dramatically, helped by a strategic marketing course at Harvard.  He was appointed an Executive Vice President and then a director of Bankers Trust Australia, which at that time was the leading investment bank and fund manager in Australia.  During his period at BT he oversaw growth of the company with funds under advice rising from $4 billion to $38 billion, and he established offshore operations in New Zealand, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Taiwan and Ireland.

Terry retired from BT following the takeover by Westpac in 2001 to take up a succession of Board appointments, including a directorship at St Vincent’s Institute of Medical Research.  Nowadays he is fully retired, and lives in Camberwell, just a stone’s throw from those Marcellin gates he entered over 60 years ago.

At school he had played in both the First XVlll and First Xl, and he continued with football at Williamstown.  Bizarrely for a Camberwell boy, he is an avid Geelong supporter.  Terry and his wife of 50 years, Dawn, have four children (one deceased) and five grand-children.  They have enjoyed discovering the world together.  By chance, one of their daughters married the son of an old Marcellin classmate, Harry de Broughe.

His favourite teacher at Marcellin was Br Eustace, for his commitment to his students, but he also retains fond memories of Brs Roger and Evangelist.  He recalls how Marcellin footy teams were forced to punch above their weight in those early day, and the insistence of Roger and Evangelist on the need for team effort stuck with him right through to his successful business days.

When he entered 21 Canterbury Rd in 1950, he would never have believed that he, of all those with him and after him, would be chosen to deliver the keynote address at the school’s 50th anniversary dinner in 2000.