2009 ANZMAC Annual Conference > Program > Keynote Speaker
Keynote Speaker - Monday 30 November
Tim Costello is recognised as one of Australia’s leading voices on social justice issues, having spearheaded public debates on gambling, urban poverty, homelessness, reconciliation and substance abuse.
And since February 2004, as Chief Executive of World Vision Australia, Tim has also been instrumental in ensuring that the issues surrounding global poverty are placed on the national agenda.
His passion for justice and for helping to alleviate the suffering of poor communities in the developing world quickly became evident when the devastating Asia tsunami struck on Boxing Day, 2004. The leadership he showed at the time helped to inspire an unprecedented outpouring of generosity from the Australian public, with World Vision Australia raising more than $100 million for tsunami relief.
Tim has also played a prominent role in the Make Poverty History campaign. And in April 2008, he chaired the Strengthening Communities, Supporting Families and Social Inclusion Committee of the Australian Government’s 2020 Summit in Canberra.
Prior to joining World Vision Australia, Tim served as Minister at the Collins Street Baptist Church in Melbourne, and as Executive Director of Urban Seed, a Christian not-for-profit outreach service for the urban poor. Between 1999 and 2002, he was also National President of the Baptist Union of Australia.
After ordination as a Baptist Minister in 1984, Tim established a vibrant and socially active ministry at St Kilda Baptist Church between 1986 and 1994. In 1993, he demonstrated his commitment to serving the community by successfully running for the position of Mayor of St Kilda.
Tim studied law and education at Monash University, followed by theology at the International Baptist Seminary in Rueschlikon, Switzerland. He also received a Masters Degree in Theology from the Melbourne College of Divinity.
In 2004, Tim was named Victorian of the Year; in June 2005 he was made an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO); and in 2006 was named Victorian Australian of the Year.
He has written the following books - Another Way to Love, Streets of Hope: Finding God in St Kilda; Tips from a Travelling Soul Searcher and Wanna Bet? Winners and Losers in Gambling’s Luck Myth (co-written with Royce Millar).
Tim and his wife Merridie have three adult children, Claire, Elliot and Martin.