Last Wednesday I was pleased to be among an overflowing crowd of people at Heathmere community hall who had gathered to celebrate the life of Jack Finck. Jack’s great love and first priority was family: his wife, Gwen, children Robyn, Warren and Grant, their spouses and grandchildren. Jack had good, solid values, and the Labor Party got lucky the day Jack Finck joined at the age of 22.
Jack was awarded life honorary membership of the party and had over 60 years of active membership. He was a passionate man who was not satisfied with just turning up for meetings; he was an activist who pursued issues that drove social justice being delivered and policies that were created to provide greater opportunities for everyone, particularly the vulnerable.
Jack was also a great athlete. He played in the 1953 Collingwood premiership team and coached numerous football teams. He knew sport was a great social equaliser but also knew education transformed lives and communities. It made sense that Jack Finck was an educator. He taught at many schools, including Portland Secondary College and Edenhope College, and rose to the position of principal at Heywood High School, a post he held until the late 1970s.
His intense interest in other people and his love of a robust discussion, coupled with his ability to draw the very best out of people, made him a well-loved community leader. He gave you the desire to strive, do better and achieve better outcomes. Our memories of Jack Finck will always be of overwhelming affection for a great man and an admired true believer. I am very proud to have known Jack Finck and convey my deepest sympathy to Gwen and their extended family. Vale Jack Finck.