Recently, our fearless leader Greg Aldridge, CEO of EveryMan was announced as a nominee under the senior category for the 2022 ACT Australian of the Year Awards.
For those of you that don't know Greg, he is a registered psychologist who has worked in the community sector since 1977, with experience in complex case management, counselling, family therapy and consultation to health, welfare, mental health, education, and legal services.
Greg joined EveryMan (previously the Canberra Men's Centre) in 1998 and was appointed as co-director with co-founder Gerald Franks in 2004, becoming the Chief Executive Officer in 2015.
During Greg's time at EveryMan, he has worked tirelessly to advocate for men, particularly men living with high and complex needs whose behaviours present equally complex management challenges to mainstream government and community sector agencies.
Describing himself as a fellow traveller to feminism, Greg is equally committed to ensuring safety and support for the partners and families who are being impacted by the presence of the men in their lives.
EveryMan's programs are the expression of this advocacy, supporting men who are at risk of homelessness, living with mental health issues like depression or anxiety, living with disabilities, men who are perpetrators or survivors of violence, men involved with the justice and child protection systems, and men experiencing difficulties with significant relationships, often leaving them estranged from their families, socially isolated, or struggling in their partnership or parenting roles.
Greg has been a primary driver of the innovative gendered services partnership between EveryMan and Toora Women, a partnership which saw EveryMan agree to take on delivery of the Indigenous Support and Accommodation Services in 2016 after the closure of Inanna, because of the number of men being supported. Toora took on the women's services.
Before EveryMan, Greg worked in out-of-home care and family support services at Canberra's Marymead Child and Family Centre. In 1995, Greg moved to Canberra from Adelaide where he had worked for over 15 years with individuals, couples and with families dealing with domestic and family violence, child abuse and neglect (victims and perpetrators) in programs offered through the Adelaide Central Mission, CatholicCare and the Forensic Psychiatry Unit of the Women's and Children's Hospital.
When we heard of Greg's nomination, we thought we would ask the people that know Greg best (his staff) how they would describe him, and the response was overwhelming.
Greg has been described as a leader who is fierce, humble, authentic, professional, positive, optimistic, supportive, intelligent, unique, approachable, fair, committed and kind.
"Greg is a very approachable leader, always ready to talk."
"Greg has been an amazing support for me personally and professionally and I wouldn't be where I am today without him."
We see an incredibly wide range of men at EveryMan and every one of them has something in their lives that matters to them and that matters to us. What I want people to see is that our organisation is a place where people will work with you to help you have outcomes that are relevant to the interests and concerns that you have for your life" "“ Greg.
Greg lives in Flynn with his wife and daughter, their dog, and a garden which serves as living proof that only the fittest survive.