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It is with heavy heart that we pass on the news of John Mayfield’s death this week. John has been a friend of DesignShare for many years and a passionate voice in our annual Awards program as a long-standing reviewer. He passed away on November 14th as the result of a heart attack. His funeral will take place on November 21st in South Australia. Condolences can be sent to:

Ann Gorey
Building Management, Strategic Services
Department for Transport, Energy and Infrastructure
GPO Box 1072 Adelaide SA 5001
tel 08 8226 5340
fax 08 8226 5588

Ed Kirbride’s recollection:

“Gentleman John’s influence on quality school design for students has been important to our international community. We have had a wider understanding of our world and student needs since we met John at our CEFPI International UEF Symposium in Baltimore, Maryland in the Fall of 1999.

We and the students of yesterday, today and tomorrow are grateful for John Mayfield and his contributions.”

Prakash Nair’s recollection:

“John was the brainchild of the Barcelona conference and we are glad that we got to see him do what he loved best, to work with him and share many happy memories together.”

Randy Fielding’s recollection:

“John’s was a joyful voice on the planet, and a beacon of intelligence. He was a champion for big ideas about learning, and also for the smaller projects that others missed.

During the DesignShare 2003 awards review, John called our attention to an Aboriginal school in Oak Valley that no one else had noticed. He wrote: “The school’s aim is to provide ‘ngapartji ngapartji’ which is the Anangu concept of equal and reciprocal giving and sharing for everyone’s benefit.”

Ngapartji ngapartji is a good description of who John was. We were blessed to have known him.”

Biographical background that speaks to the enormous expertise, contributions and spirit that John possessed:

John Mayfield has had a long involvement with Education as a teacher and senior administrator.

On graduation he was appointed to the Adelaide Boys High School from which he gained promotions in the State Education service to Science teaching positions at South Australian Secondary Schools. In 1967 he was awarded to a Churchill Fellowship to study Science Education in several countries. He returned to South Australia where he was appointed as a Consultant and later Superintendent in Education. In 1970-72, accompanied by his family, he studied at Harvard Graduate School of Education in the USA gaining his Doctorate Degree.

John Mayfield returned to South Australia where he held senior positions in the State Education Department including Director of Facilities and Deputy Director General Education from 1982-89. During this period, he was elected a Fellow of the Australian College of Education and held numerous State and National appointments including President of the Adelaide College of Advanced Education, Chair of various committees of the Australian Schools Commission and (Acting) Director General of Technical and Further Education in South Australia. In 1989, he was seconded as Senior Advisor to the Department of Premier and Cabinet where he helped develop the proposals which gained the MFP-Australia Project for South Australia.

From 1990 to 1994, he held the position of Manager of Education Business Development in the MFP-Australian Project from which he retired to establish Danton Services International offering a range of Educational consulting services.

John has had a long involvement with the OECD Program on Educational Buildings based in Paris. He has held positions of Chairman of the 21 nation steering committee and Senior International Consultant to the Program.

Community Service: John Mayfield has been active in the service of the community. He served a term as an elected member of the East Torrens District Council, has been a member of the Council and Trustee of the Pembroke School in South Australia, a Director of the Rotary Club of Adelaide, a Member of the Board of Aged Care and Housing Group and the Trustee for Science for the Alumni Association of the University of Adelaide.

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