If a Thing's Worth Doing
By Evan H Walker

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If a Thing's Worth Doing

Product details
Paperback: 420 pages
Publisher: Evan Walker
ISBN: 9780646931616
Trim size: 216 x 216 mm

This memoir was begun by Evan after his retirement from public life. He saw it as a letter to his children and grandchildren, to give them some background to their own lives, and much of the work was recorded in his own voice.

Later others, including members of his family, expanded parts of the text to cover areas of his life that he had not covered in full himself, and extensive use was made of a personal diary he kept during his parliamentary years.      

About the Author:

Professor the Honourable Evan Walker AO was born in 1935 to Roy and Ethel Walker, the fifth of their eight children, growing up as a boarder at Box Hill Grammar School, where his father was headmaster. Evan’s forebears were early settlers from England.

Evan Walker studied architecture at RMIT and Melbourne University and completed his Masters degree in Architecture as a Commonwealth scholar at the University of Toronto, Canada.  In 1964 he established the   architectural practice Walker and Jackson in Melbourne, later to become Daryl Jackson Arch., which won many awards in planning and design.

Evan was elected to the Victorian Legislative Council in 1979 and became a key member of the Labor team led by John Cain that won government in 1982. He served as a minister in many different portfolios including Planning, Major Projects, Conservation and the Environment, Tertiary Education and Agriculture, until his retirement from Cabinet in 1990.
In 1991 he became Dean of the Faculty of Architecture and Planning at The University of Melbourne, retiring from the university in 2000.

Throughout his professional life, Evan has chaired numerous committees and authorities such as the National Capital Authority, RMIT Council and the VCA (to name a few). Even after the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease began to affect his mobility seriously he continued his work with the Docklands Authority in Victoria and the Port Arthur and Sullivan’s Cove authorities in Tasmania.

Name : Owen Davies
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Review : Its Tuesday night May the 12th, have just turned to the back cover and put down on my office table "If A Thing's Worth Doing". I thought I knew a thing or two about Evan Walker, having now read his memoir I now realize I knew very little, if there is a descriptive word that goes beyond astonished then that's the one I am looking for. As I got further in to the book I began to feel a lost opportunity coming on, what an extraordinary man, a roll model to all those who have been fortunate to know and work with him......... ........... ......... deep in thought I have become a little speechless, my vision is blurred and my writing has stalled again....... ........ that's the effect, the emotion and the way I have been moved by the story. Over the many nights that it has taken me to read it from cover to cover I made notes of interest that I thought I might refer to in this letter, ...... well, maybe some other time. For all sorts of reasons I feel a sense of sadness, and one of them being that neither Bob or Elsa are ever likely to read If A Thing's Worth Doing', it seems such a waste to place this book on the shelf to gather dust along with the rest of my small collection of books, I am happy to keep it but think I would prefer to pass it on to someone who in one way or another had some form of connection with the Walker family, I am sure there will be a copy or two moving around the Mallee but with your [the Walkers] permission I will investigate who might be a worthy recipient, of course there are many, my cousin Heather Farley [ne Finlayson] spends many hours a week on a dialysis machine and would very much appreciate its content. Next time I visit Melbourne, at the top of my things to do list, will be to take a walk around Southbank, sit, reflect, take in the Yarra and remind myself that I have lived and continue to live a wonderful and rewarding life and that the Walkers have contributed towards the path that I have traveled, but far more than that, to marvel at the cityscape of Southbank and be conscious of the fact that this is a very fitting legacy to the main man behind its concept [E H Walker]. Life is such a mix of fortunes and misfortunes. Isn't that what makes it so interesting.

Name : Lola
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Review : I have just finished Evan’s book and want to congratulate you all on such a fantastic job. It is such a tribute to Evan and his voice, his thoughts and his achievements. I hung on every word because so much overlapped with our lives - as you know I worked at Frontier when Evan was there, and of course the whole ALP/Cain Government thing was so familiar. I particularly loved the way you two met and his whirlwind courtship, and I liked the way the politics was balanced with stories about your family life. It is beautifully designed and the photos and images add a huge amount to it.

Name : Bruce Allen
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Review : I have just finished reading the book. Couldn't put it down. So many parts that were familiar: from sitting in Box Hill Methodist Church as a six-year old (1951) watching the Box Hill Grammar kids file in to sit on the south side; to the Jackson Walker era in more recent times. I also learnt things that I wish I had known earlier. For example, Roy Walker used to drop in to the office for a chat with the staff (and to check that we were behaving ourselves) when Evan and Judith were living in Canada. The book tells me that Roy was dux of Box Hill Primary School in 1913: I was dux of Box Hill Primary in 1956 − so we had something in common and never got to talk about it. Probably just as well or he would have stayed in the office even longer!

Name : Viv and Andrew McCutcheon
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Review : This memoir is based on the actual reflections of significant people across some four generations involved in the evolution of Melbourne and Victoria, and reveals how thoughtful judgments were made in the process of working to achieve outcomes in the public interest. Flip through it and boggle at the amount of work put into this book. So much diary material, press cuttings, sketches by Evan and others, and wonderful photos, all building up to a fascinating and valuable record. An immense accomplishment. Congratulations to the editorial team for a truly wonderful production. I think that together they have produced a new benchmark on how to record an era. Viv & Andrew McCutcheon

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