One of CQUniversity’s most generous donors, Scott Williams AM was recently awarded the Queensland Community Foundation (QCF) Higher Education Philanthropist of the Year Award.
The award recognises an outstanding individual, family or family foundation with a proven record of exceptional financial generosity and volunteer leadership to one or more Queensland-based tertiary education institutions.
CQUniversity Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Nick Klomp and two University Scott Williams Foundation Scholarship recipients were among the guests who witnessed Mr Williams receive the award at the 2019 Philanthropist of the Year Gala Lunch in Brisbane on Friday, 14 June.
Mr Williams, a successful Noosa-based serial business operator, gives back some of his businesses’ profits to the Australian community through his Scott Williams Foundation. The Foundation's principal focus is presently Noosa and its surrounding communities. In 2012, Mr Williams was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for his services to local government, business, community radio, and higher education, and for philanthropy.
With a well-established record of outstanding philanthropic support to higher education organisations, Mr Williams has made a significant impact across the Australian community.
Mr Williams said it was a great honour and privilege to be recognised for his work.
“Education is key. However, I also understand that not everyone has access to schooling due to their own challenges. So, I set-up the Scott Williams Foundation in 2017 as a vehicle to maximise the impact of supported education initiatives,” he said.
“For many years directly, and now through the Foundation, we have supported tertiary education from the ground up. We have been able to sponsor around 700 school-aged children, creating a pipeline of talent for tertiary institutions like CQUniversity.
“I have been very fortunate to work with some very supportive and talented people, who have helped the Scott Williams Foundation make a national impact.”
Professor Nick Klomp congratulated Mr Williams on his award and thanked him for his inspiring philanthropic leadership towards tertiary education across Australia.
“Scott has supported universities across Australia for more than 20 years. His advocacy and leadership is truly inspiring," he said.
"His generosity provides disadvantaged students access to university, and the opportunity to succeed at a tertiary level."
Professor Klomp said that Mr Williams had supported CQUniversity since 2018, donating funds to establish the Scott Williams Foundation Scholarships and supporting the 2018 CQUniCares Annual Appeal.
"CQUniversity is honoured to benefit from Scott’s generosity, which has a transformational impact on our students and communities," he said.
"Given that CQUniversity is proud to support one of the highest proportion of students from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds, being able to support their aspirations through philanthropic-funded scholarships and other bursaries is essential."