Timothy Duggan OAM
Timothy Duggan OAM says he immediately thought of his parents and grandparents when he first learned he was to be awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia.
“They would be bursting with pride if they were alive. My grandparents are members of the Stolen Generation and I always think back to their struggles and experiences to keep me ticking along. It gives me a sense of purpose and obligation to guide, mentor and coach. I think of their journey and realize that my issues are minute compared to what they went through. The (thought of the) intergenerational trauma actually makes me stronger.”
Mr Duggan was the first person from the Northern Territory to play in the National Basketball League (NBL) and the only Indigenous Australian to play in the NBL during the 1990s, but he first started playing in his back yard, after his dad installed some hoops.
“The basketball hoops were built from scratch. It was then up to me to have a crack.”
Recognised for his volunteer work on the Hoops 4 Health initiative, the program combines basketball skills and health activities and encourages young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island people to focus on their health and wellbeing.
“I'm proud of impacting lives through the Hoops 4 Health model. Even though I played basketball at the top level in this country, I consider founding and sustaining Hoops 4 Health my biggest achievement.”
“Thank you to the person who nominated me and to my family for giving me the values to be who I am.”
Mr Duggan also pointed to the importance of the Order of Australia, our highest honour, in recognising the outstanding achievements of Australians.