Trevor Boyd: Tributes, Recognition and Best Wishes
Today marks the end of an era due to the retirement of our very special colleague and friend – Trevor Boyd.
Trevor Boyd has spent the vast majority of his working life helping blind and vision-impaired adults and children, their families, the teachers and schools that support them, and being a tower of strength to his many colleagues and friends.
For 23 of those years Trevor ran Quantum’s Melbourne office and was known to all simply as Trev. Many vision teachers called him St. Trev because of his unbelievable commitment to solving problems and making sure that technology was not only available but that teachers and most importantly students, knew how to use it effectively. Go to any meeting in Victoria that is attended by blind or vision impaired people and there will always be someone who can recount a tale of when Trev helped them out; in both a metaphorical and literal sense. Trev showed countless students how they could use technology to achieve and to break down the stereotypes and prejudices that were often the barriers to their success.
During those years at Quantum, Trevor witnessed the fantastic growth and proliferation of assistive technologies, from very few options to the myriad of devices and services that exist today. Any product that Trevor became involved with, he became the master of it. Often in his own time he would ensure that he understood it inside and out. He’d learn how to repair it, how to best introduce and train someone on it, understand its limitations and its unique strengths. Trevor is a salesperson that never once “sold” a product. He always matched a product to the needs of each individual, and if he couldn’t help he would say so or refer them to another supplier. In the world of ethical sales, there is no-one more ethical that Trevor Boyd.
Prior to joining Quantum Trevor worked at the Burwood School for the Blind, then a part of the Royal Victorian Institute for the Blind (RVIB). As a support technician he was exposed to the nitty-gritty of everyday life of students in a classroom. Their reliance on certain devices, the problems for everyone when something stopped working, and the notion that it takes a whole range of factors to achieve successful outcomes. Things just had to work. Through his passion, dedication, good-nature and extensive technical skills he has ensured that is what happened for so many people.
He has come full circle to finish his working life at Vision Australia. He will be missed by many as one of nature’s true gentleman.
From Lee Kumutat: Director of Communications, San Francisco Lighthouse for the Blind.
Tenacious, unrelenting and impish: are the three words that spring to mind when I think about Trevor Boyd or ‘Trevski’ or ‘the Trevinator’. More than most, I think, Trevor really ‘gets it’. He totally ‘gets’ the paramount importance of providing blind and visually impaired children the technological tools they must have in order to even just make level-pegging within a mainstream school setting, let alone excel and fulfil their potential.
He ‘gets’ that resources are often stretched to breaking point and beyond, and always did everything humanly possible to try to ensure students weren’t collateral damage in the tussle.
He ‘gets’ technology isn’t everybody’s forte and would patiently and painstakingly train and retrain students and teachers whenever they needed.
He ‘gets’ that attitudes towards new technology and its adoption move at a creakingly slow pace, and never loses sight of the true goal: access to education and information.
I worked with Trevski for over a decade and even when he was frustrated, when he felt nobody was listening, everybody’s priorities were the wrong-way-up, not once do I remember him adopting a tone, raising his voice or choosing not to engage. He would quietly and gently, with dogged tenacity, keep making his point and reinforcing his reasoning. Eventually, he would be heard because everybody knew Trevor’s aims were always the truest, always selfless and almost always stemming from common sense.
I hope Trevor’s legacy will be an enclave of like-minded, dedicated professionals for whom he has modelled his own brand of singular purpose. To you Trevski: I wish you all the best, it was a privilege to work with you.
Peter Cracknell, Manager Qld Quantum RLV
Over the 18 years that I have worked alongside Trev I cannot remember ever hearing a grumble or bad word about him from anybody, and whenever I picked up the phone to have a chat, he was always positive and enthusiastic, even in the hardest times. I don’t recall him ever having a bad word to say about anybody, and even when products or suppliers were letting us down and causing us grief, he always kept the bigger picture in mind and soldiered on. Plus, he always laughed at my jokes.
Lea Nagel, Educational Programs, Statewide Vision Resource Centre
I have really valued all of the support and tech help that you have given myself SVRC and Victorian Schools over the many years. Your approach has always been to make sure that the students or your clients have equipment that works for them and their needs. Your calm and warm personality has been really brilliant as well. I am impressed that you have travelled to schools right around Victoria to demonstrate or set up equipment, sharing your expertise with people who are rural.
Have an excellent retirement!
Gayle Skinner, Parent and Visiting Teacher, Vision
We have a long history of association, meeting (me as a parent) when Shae was attending RVIB in her primary school years at the old version of the support skills program. You have always made yourself available to solve any problem we may have – tech or otherwise.
It was a pleasure to reconnect with you when I became a Visiting Teacher. Your gentle, kind and interested manner solved many an issue. I always appreciated your interest in what my family were/are currently up to. Your expertise will be greatly missed but retirement will be fantastic. Enjoy this new part of your life with family and friends.
Happy Retirement, Gayle
Lisa Zarb, Vision Support, Catholic Education Office Victoria
Congratulations on your amazing career. Thank you for all of the support and kindness you always showed to us in Catholic Education over so many years. It was so re-assuring to know that we could count on your knowledge and assistance which was so graciously given. May the next phase of your life be filled with happiness and everything you dream of doing that gives you fulfilment.