opinion

What I See with Pete Fiorenza: Integrity, more than just a word

Peter FiorenzaGeraldton Guardian
Former Geraldton Mayor and late beloved father and grandfather Ian Carpenter.
Camera IconFormer Geraldton Mayor and late beloved father and grandfather Ian Carpenter. Credit: Cancer Council WA/Supplied

Integrity is something I hold pretty dear.

Basically, it’s a word that suggests a person is honest and has strong moral principles, but I reckon it’s more than that.

There are several people I have come across in my life who personify integrity. One was former mayor Ian Carpenter.

No longer with us, Ian was, in my opinion, a true gentleman, and this was reflected in the way he dealt with people and situations.

Basically, he oozed integrity.

Ian once said something to me that I will always remember: “Peter, a good bloke is someone who always does the right thing, even when no one is watching.”

And that comment, to me, is not just a gem to help guide us in the right way, but a fair portion of the crown jewels. It’s the true essence of integrity.

Now, I’m not sure if I would be considered to be one of these people but I am hoping I’m at least a work in progress.

So, what is my gauge or checklist?

A quick internet search establishes that there are seven key attributes of integrity.

According to an article from smartcompany.com, written by psychologist Eva Ash, the list includes honesty, respect, generating trust, pride, responsibility, keeping promises, and helping others.

A good bloke is someone who always does the right thing, even when no one is watching.

- Former City of Greater Geraldton Mayor Ian Carpenter.

For Ash, the biggest area of interest is that of helping others.

“It doesn’t have to be a grand gesture — standing up for people in public transport is one, or assisting a person to cross the road safely,” she writes.

“Integrity ... provides a vital certainty in a confusing, sometimes threatening world.”

Like Ian Carpenter, there are quite a few other people I come across, who epitomise integrity.

People who don’t grandstand but stand out from the crowd, simply, because “doing the right thing” is part of their DNA.

Often, I refer to these people as being good citizens.

I have known Ron O’Malley for many years. I believe he was a fine footballer for the Railways club — well, if winning a JJ Clune Medal in 1962 is anything to go by.

And there probably wouldn’t be a family in Geraldton that would not have bought a car from him or his business at one time or another.

Since playing for Railways, Ron has continued to be a member and loyal supporter.

I see Ron as part of my football broadcasting involvement, and he is always up for a chat.

And although he may question at times, he never rubbishes or criticises anyone or anything, and always respects an opinion. It’s no wonder he still sells a heap of cars each year. Integrity is everything.

Peter Fiorenza is host of Fiorenza on Sunday between 10am and noon on Radio MAMA.

Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.

Sign up for our emails