Sir David and Lady Martin
The Foundation was established by Sir David Martin KCMG AO, the Governor of NSW in August 1990. David grew up in Sydney and attended Scots College in Bellevue Hill. His father was a Commander in the Navy and from an early age David showed interest in following his fathers footsteps to a career in the Navy. He was a caring boy who enjoyed family life and he was later to reflect this in his family life with wife Susie and his three children.
At 13 years of age, David joined the Royal Australian Navy as a Cadet Midshipman. He had a challenging and distinguished career which concluded with the rank of Rear Admiral, his final posting being Flag Officer Naval Support Command in Sydney. He became an officer of the Order of Australia in 1985 and was knighted in 1988, shortly before being appointed the Governor of New South Wales. As Governor of New South Wales Sir David was chairman, trustee, patron and supporter of a range of community services and charitable organisations and was able to view first hand, the hardships that were being faced by many Australians. He reached out to as many young people as he could, from all walks of life. Whenever he met them, he sought to encourage them to develop their undiscovered potential. He was particularly concerned about the young homeless and disadvantaged people who now inhabit our cities in such great numbers and was shocked that so many of these young people had no one who cared for them and their future. It was this concern which lead to the creation of the Foundation, which was considered by Sir David as the first step towards reaching his dream of 'an Australian community where children can grow up with hope and understanding'.
In those last few days, as he faced death, Sir David gave the opportunity of life to so many young Australians for years to come. He was given from 6 months – 2 years to live, but was hopeful that he could “beat this thing” (a rare and fatal form of lung cancer). He had expected to play an active role in the Foundation, not only to get it going but to keep it going. Sadly he died just a few days after setting up the Foundation. The valuable work of the Sir David Martin Foundation is an investment in the future of our children. It gives hope to young Australians now and for generations to come.
Lady Martin carries on the splendid work as the Foundation's First Lady. She is the guest speaker at a wide variety of occasions. She works extremely hard to continue the legacy of Sir David, who lived his life on the virtues of service to his country; courage, fortitude and caring for those who are disadvantaged.
Lady Martin also leads the Foundation's Women's Committee who host regular fundraising events for the Foundation.
- Did you know?
Almost half of all homeless youth said they are homeless because of trouble with parents or step-parents, often through abuse, blended families or death...