Many will remember Bernie Malouf
TODAY’S funeral of Coffs Harbour’s first mayor Bernie Malouf is expected to be one of the largest funerals here in recent history.
Mr Malouf died on Saturday, aged 88, surrounded by his friends and family.
The death of the man who led Coffs Harbour in her first steps as a city in 1987 was met with sadness by all those who remembered him at Coffs Harbour City Council.
He was well-loved in the local parish of the Catholic Church especially for his untiring work in establishing the first aged care services in the district.
The enormity of his efforts in the church were acknowledged by the presentation of a papal medal in Rome, a rare honour.
Persuaded to run for public office, he was first elected to serve on the Coffs Harbour Shire Council in 1983 and gained the shire presidency in both 1986 and 1987.
As first mayor, he remained in office until 1991 and then continued to serve as a councillor until his retirement in 1995.
Among the other local achievements that can be attributed to his leadership and vision is the creation of the Coffs Harbour Education Campus. He saw a university as an important step in the new city’s future growth and development, as well as the ultimate clean industry.
As both a mayor and a councillor, he pushed everyone possible to make this dream a reality.
At the opening of the Coffs Harbour Mall in 1987, NSW Premier Barrie Unsworth announced the town would become a city later that year. Shire President Malouf became the first mayor on the day Coffs Harbour officially became a city on September 1, 1987.