By Dan Dwyer

Stephen Toomey, the Chair of our Churches of Christ Community Care Board, has been awarded the Medal of Order (OAM) in the Australia Day Honours List, for service to the community, particularly through the church.

Stephen has been part of Churches of Christ in NSW since 1963, when he became a member of Hurstville Church of Christ, where he still worships. In 1974 Stephen became a board member there, but his service within the church has also included elder, deacon and ministry coordinator. Stephen has contributed to Churches of Christ in a state and national capacity holding the role of State Conference President and Chairman of Conference Executive in NSW 2012-2015 and as a member of the Preacher’s Provident Fund in the early nineties. Beyond Churches of Christ, Stephen is the Honorary Secretary of Relationships Forum Australia.

In his professional capacity, Stephen is the founding partner of Toomey Pegg Lawyers. He commenced practice in 1974 and has over 45 years of experience specialising in all aspects of commercial law. Stephen advises clients on a wide variety of issues involving trade and commerce, compliance, finance and property. He has particular expertise in the drafting, administration and negotiation of contracts, the structuring of commercial transactions and the establishment, and conduct, of commercial enterprises and not-for-profits.

Stephen has worked extensively with a large range of institutions including companies, trade associations, cooperatives and charities, advising on their formation, restructure, governance and conduct. In his pro-bono work, Stephen has helped Primary Club of Australia, Hagar Australia, The Coeliac Society of NSW and In Sight of Dreams Limited, who mentor and support people who live with a disability to empower them to live more independently and enjoy a better quality-of-life.              

The Order of Australia is an honour that recognises Australian citizens and other persons for achievement or meritorious service. It is tremendous recognition for all of Stephen’s hard work, which he shared with me, wouldn’t have been possible, without the support of his wife Lynne.

I have witnessed Stephen’s leadership firsthand and those of us who have worked closely with Stephen would, I’m sure, agree that Stephen leads the Community Care Board with tremendous diligence and humility and I cannot think of someone more worthy of this honour.

Dan Dwyer is Chief Executive Officer of Churches of Christ Community Care.