Percy Rollo Brett OBE (1923–2022) Research Leader and Public Servant

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James K. Richardson


History of Australian telecommunications, obituary


Percy Rollo Brett OBE (11 November 1923 to 8 August 2022) was a highly respected head of the PMG/APO (later Telecom Australia/Telstra) Research Laboratories between 1964 and 1975. He was promoted to Head of Planning for Telecom Australia in July 1975, and then State Manager, Victoria for that organization in 1980–1983. Rollo’s achievements as Director of the Research Laboratories included building links with Australian universities to strengthen the Laboratories’ expertise in longer term research, and masterminding the Laboratories’ move from six different sites in central Melbourne to a single site, in purpose-designed buildings in Clayton, opposite Monash University’s main campus. In the early 1970s, he used the expertise he gained as Chairman of the Telecommunications and Electronics Standards Committee of the Standards Association of Australia to lead the Australian Post Office’s conversion of all its standards to metric. Upon retirement in 1983 he was awarded the OBE.


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