Historical information

Framed portrait of John Wicking who was President of the Association for the Blind 1973-1984 as well as a generous benefactor. It is part of a series of paintings commissioned by the AFB Board to commemorate the work of past presidents of the organisation. Mr Wicking wears a navy suit, white shirt and navy blue Kiwi tie.
John Wicking served as President of Vision Australia from 1973 to 1984 and as Vice President in 1990.
He was Managing Director and Chairman of Kiwi International when he was introduced to the Committee in 1971. With a natural air of authority, he was known to be both strong and wise. One of the first hurdles Mr Wicking faced following his election as President in 1973 was understanding the health service system and sorting out the differing views of committee members over recommendations for projects costing hundreds of thousands of dollars with no funds to implement them.
The ten years of his Presidency were a time of exceptional growth and expansion. He was instrumental in acquiring an adjacent property to those already owned in Glenferrie Road in 1974 at a cost of $120,000, on which the Low Vision Clinic was erected – the first of its type in Australia.
Land was also bought in both the metropolitan and country areas for future expansion. Day care centres were opened in Ballarat and Bendigo and new metropolitan services commenced. Mr Wicking formed a committee to explore the possibility of a radio station people unable to read standard print. As a result 3RPH commenced broadcasting in 1981.
Mr Wicking was also involved in the incorporation of Vision Australia under the Companies Act in 1990.
After his retirement as President Mr. Wicking continued as a committee member until 1994. In 1995 he was instrumental in the establishment of the Tilly Aston Heritage Collection, on which he served as Chairman until sadly passing away in 2002.

Physical description

1 art original in old gold frame

Inscriptions & markings

The plaque at the base of the painting reads 'Mr John O. Wicking AM / President 1973-1984 / Association for the Blind'.