I’m Jim Kokkalos and I live in Moorabbin in sunny Melbourne. I was born in Kalamata, Greece, and my family…folks came out here back in the early ’60s with five kids.
Mum and Dad, not a word of English. I was the youngest. I wasn’t even walking at the time. I work for local government in the engineering department. I’m the OH&S person there.
Always enjoyed OH&S, enjoy helping people. I suppose that’s why I started off with the SES. OK, we get our 3:00 call-outs, our 2:00 call-outs, but we don’t stop doing it. It’s great. It’s a great environment.
You learn heaps, you meet new people. Met my wife here as well. Kids get involved as well. It is a family environment, and I always say to the members, “You’ll get out of the SES what you put into it.”
I get…just the satisfaction knowing that you’ve walked away from an incident or a job knowing that you’ve done something, you’ve made a difference.
Proud of the SES – especially the members as well, because it’s not…just me. I’ve got 35 members, and just proud that they make themselves available, and knowing I can rely on them.
As a Greek Victorian, proud of our state and… I just feel I belong here, yeah.
I’m Jim, I’m Victorian, and I’m proud of it.