The Victoria University community is joining with the rest of Australia in mourning the death of Sir Zelman Cowen who died last week in Melbourne aged 92.
Sir Zelman's distinguished career in law was equalled by a lifelong commitment to education as demonstrated by his involvement with Victoria University from its early days.
In 1994 he accepted the positions of Distinguished Visiting Professor and Chair of the Victoria University Foundation. As Chair of the Foundation, he led the University's efforts in gaining philanthropic support for students in their studies, including contributions for prizes and scholarships. On retiring as Chair of the Foundation he agreed to continue his involvement by accepting an honorary appointment position as Inaugural Patron.
Victoria University's Sir Zelman Cowen Centre at The Victoria Law School in Queen Street Melbourne was established in 2001. The Centre provides training and support for the judiciary and the legal profession in partnership with the Cambridge University Board of Continuing Education.
In 1998 Sir Zelman was awarded the Honorary Doctor of Laws by Victoria University in recognition of his outstanding career and service to the University.
Sir Zelman was an inspiration to his students and a tribute to his profession. His legacy will continue to be found in universities, courtrooms, barristers' chambers and solicitors' offices throughout Australia.
His life enriched many at Victoria University and our thoughts are with his wife and family.