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Billy Bowden garners prestigious Arthritis Award

For immediate release
21st November 2008

Billy Bowden garners prestigious Arthritis Award

Billy Bowden, internationally renowned cricket umpire, is set to receive the Arthritis New Zealand Business Development Award for his contribution, as ambassador for the charitable organisation.  The ceremony, held at the Waipuna Hotel in Auckland on Friday 21st November, will acknowledge contributions from a diverse mixture of people who have offered assistance to Arthritis New Zealand.

Bowden has been Arthritis New Zealand’s lively ambassador for three years now, and seems to really relish his role.  “It’s a privilege to be recognised for this work; however that’s not why I do it.  I’m absolutely wrapped that I can make a difference and help people with arthritis”, says Bowden.

His work with the charity has provided a great platform for the organisation to lobby for better treatment of arthritis sufferers and improved access to vital medicines that aren’t being subsidised under the current system.

Arthritis New Zealand’s Chief Executive, Sandra Kirby says, “Billy’s been a wonderful inspiration to people with arthritis all over New Zealand.  His help over the last few years has been immeasurable not only for fundraising, but also by creating awareness that arthritis is not only an older person’s disease”. 

Bowden’s ‘crooked finger of doom’ is something that has helped to set him apart from other umpires, but many don’t realise that it’s his arthritis that prevents him from straightening his finger.

Diagnosed over 20 years ago, Bowden has been a role-model, not only for sports fans, but also proving to people with arthritis that they can also succeed despite having such a debilitating disease.


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