Blacktown City Council has paid tribute to late veterinarian and former Mayor of Blacktown City, Dr Russ Dickens OAM, by naming a new veterinary clinic in his honour.
Mayor, Tony Bleasdale OAM, officially launched the clinic, located within the new Blacktown Animal Rehoming Centre (BARC) yesterday.
The clinic will serve as a teaching practice for students, through partnerships with Western Sydney University, University of Sydney and Richmond TAFE. It will service the needs of the animals at BARC and is currently not open to the public.
“Russ devoted his life to animals, through his vet practice, his research and his contributions through Council,” Mayor Bleasdale said.
“He was a passionate vet, who dedicated himself to his Blacktown veterinary clinic for many decades.
“He was one of the first vets in Australia to study disease in koalas and provide critical advice for their management.”
Dr Dickens served as a Councillor for 36 years, including a term as Mayor, between 1980 and 2016.
“He was a passionate volunteer, who dedicated much of his time to helping animals at the Council Animal Holding Facility,” said Mayor Bleasdale.
“Russ Dickens was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australian in 1992, and in 2020, I was proud to awarded him the Key to Blacktown City.
“I wish that Russ could be here to see this wonderful facility, but his legacy lives on through the clinic, BARC and all the animals he so passionately cared and advocated for.”