A History of the Company’s founder Brian William Esler
3rd of April 1924 – 3rd of December 1997
Brian Esler was educated firstly at the Christian Brothers College in Albury, then boarding at St. Gregory’s in Sydney, after which he commenced his survey articles with J.L. Fisher in Tallangatta, Victoria. During his articles, he enrolled in the army to serve in New Guinea with the 2nd Flash Spotting Battery. At the conclusion of the war he finalised his survey studies in Melbourne, there gaining his licence prior to his return to Albury, rejoining family and friends.
He was then employed by Mr Tom Butcher, an established and respected surveyor with a substantial practice in the region. In 1949 Brian commenced his own practice after departing his old employer and walking 16 miles to habitation and transport. B.W. Esler & Associates was then established, Brian travelling widely through southern NSW and N.E Victoria. In this location he was rather exceptional in that he fully comprehended differing cadastral systems, his presentation of surveys in each state fully reflecting the nuances expected in that state.
As with many of the Surveyors of his time, engineering design was part of their stock trade, and, as his firm grew, engineering work became a significant part of the practice.
To this day the rather unusual situation of survey dominated multi-discipline practice remains a legacy of his influence. He was a forward thinking and intuitive man, quickly embracing and applying new technology.
Living in a regional area, and by virtue of his nature and principles, his name became widely known and respected. He regularly, and with ease, crossed many social borders, gaining respect and acceptance from those he encountered. The high regard afforded him by the legal profession, Local Government and private clients, both as a surveyor and community conscious citizen, has well benefited the professional image of surveying.
Brian actively participated in community affairs to the considerable benefit of others. For 42 years he served on the board of the Hume Building Society, the last 26 as its chairman.
This organisation regards his leadership as largely instrumental to its success and it remains a highly respected regional financial institution. In addition he was, for 40 years an active participant in all aspects of St. Vincent De Paul Society. Until his death he was the regional president of the St. Vincent De Paul Conference. On the 7th April 1994, Brian received a Papal Knighthood in recognition of his services to the society.
Brian survived by his wife Margaret and their five children. Posthumously he was awarded the Order of Australia, an honour few within our profession achieve, but a reflection of the man and his contribution to society.
To his employees, Brian’s guidance was a unique experience and in 2007 his spirit lives on through the company. The company has now expanded to six directors, who manage three major offices, in two states and currently employs a staff of twenty-five.