Past Award Nominees and Recipients
Senior Australian of the Year
2018 NSW Senior Australian of the Year Nominee
Reverend Bill Crews AMState: New South Wales
For the last 45 years, Reverend Bill Crews has worked with people addicted to alcohol and drugs, the homeless and those falling through society’s cracks. A trained electrical engineer, Bill began helping Sydney’s street people in 1969. By 1971 he had decided to quit engineering and work full time at the Wayside Chapel. He has since delivered a lot of ‘firsts’: Australia’s first life education centre, injecting room, 24-hour crisis centre, reunion program for adoptees and birth parents, and modern youth refuge are among his achievements. Ordained a Uniting Church minister in 1983, Bill established The Exodus Foundation to assist the homeless and needy. Today Bill’s Foundation is one of Sydney’s largest frontline charities, serving a thousand meals to the needy every day, offering free dental and medical services, as well as social workers, chaplaincy, counselling and food parcel assistance. More recently Bill established The Bill Crews Charitable Trust to teach literacy skills to children who have disengaged with the mainstream education system.