Patrick recounts his ‘mad’ journey to Rotary
Matamata Rotary members were impressed with both local inventor Patrick Roskam’s innovative mind and great presentation recently.
The 13 year-old was the group’s guest speaker at their weekly meeting on July 15.
He told the assembled members and guests about how he invented the 5 in 1 Gudgeon Pro for a school science fair and how that resulted in a patented product, two companies and his own lawyer, who he had bribed into a reduced rate with his mum Angela’s caramel slice, and an international interest in his product.
Patrick has had 20 orders from Chile and is now looking at the possibility of travelling to the country to investigate the market.
Patrick said he was unsure about what he wanted to do when he ‘‘grew up’’, in response to a question a Rotary member asked, as he had learnt a lot of computer and engineering skills through designing and producing the fencing tool.
Out of 18 assessments at school, he had gained 17 excellences despite the time needed to run a business.
‘‘After Fieldays it was a funny feeling as so much had gone on to make the Gudgeon Pro’s then get ready for Fieldays and here I was sitting back at school having to catch up on tests and lots of my teachers had no idea about what had happened. I think that is called reality,’’ he said.
Rotary members were very impressed with his self-belief and the support of his family, which included spending the April holidays assembling 500 Gudgeon Pros.
A local farmer and Rotary member, Stew Wadey, commended him. ‘‘Your age alone blows us away,’’ he said.
Wadey believed that New Zealand farmers needed innovators like Patrick to help keep them ahead of the world.
There was a lot of interest in his fencing tool from the members after the meeting.
Rotary member Gordon Lukies said he saw similarities between Patrick and Sir William Gallagher.
‘‘Gallagher had the same ideas as you,’’ he told Patrick.
Rotary president Owen Farmilo said the club was always looking for interesting people to speak at the meetings to keep the club informed with what was happening in their community.
GUEST SPEAKER: Matamata inventor Patrick Roskam, right, last week spoke at Matamata Rotary’s meeting. He is pictured with club president Owen Farmilo.