Australian Society For Fish Biology

Michael Hall

The Michael Hall Student Award was established by the Australian Society for Fish Biology in 2006 with sponsorship from David Hall, Managing Director of Hallprint Pty Ltd in recognition of the life time of achievements of Michael’s contribution to fisheries science and fisheries management worldwide.

Michael Hall was born in Yorkshire in 1938, the youngest of five children of Joseph and Mary, young Michael soon learned that nothing was achieved without hard work, perseverance and initiative. Mike’s father Joseph lost a leg in World War I at 19 yet lived a successful life raising a large family and living to the age of 95.

Michael met his beloved life-long partner Wendy at school in the UK when they were both only in their mid-teens.  Michael and Wendy headed to Australia in the mid 1960s looking for greener pastures.  Like his own father, Mike had to fight medical adversity losing much of his stomach to an ulcer in his late teens.  He also held a variety of sales and marketing jobs until realising that he could only really work for one person in life – himself.   Hallprint was formed in 1972 and Mike and Wendy commenced making printed labels for a living.

Hallprint developed into a successful producer of high quality labels during the 1970s.  During this period, Michael also fought crippling arthritis.  Not only did Michael defy medical prognoses that would have had him in a wheelchair at 40, by the time the 1980s came around he was looking for a new challenge.  His son David, a fisheries biologist, challenged him to manufacture for him a superior fish tag for his research program.

After much research and development work in unison with David and a number of other fishery biologists, Michael succeeded in his goal to produce high technology external tags and Hallprint commenced commercial production of fish tags in the early 1980s. By 1985, Hallprint ceased production of printed labels and has specialised in the production of fish tags ever since.

Michael was highly innovative in the field of external fish tag design and loved his work with a passion. He had a special ability to make every customer feel that they were the only one that mattered.  Just as he did with his son David, he spoke at length with each and every biologist that showed an interest in designing the right tag for their specific situation.  With wife Wendy, Michael established Hallprint as an innovative, high quality, reliable and respected supplier of numbered fish tags and in so doing made a substantial and lasting contribution to fisheries science and fisheries management worldwide. This success is reflected in the management actions and many significant publications that have arisen from research programs that have successfully used Hallprint tags.

Along the way Mike and Wendy travelled to all parts of the globe to meet with customers and promote their products. They made some very special friendships along the way with key fisheries people and their spouses. Michael was especially pleased to see his son David, an experienced fisheries researcher and manager, take over the reins of Hallprint during 2002 when he first became ill and ensure that the company that he built not only continued but remained in safe family hands.

Michael always pushed hard to support students that were unable to source adequate funding for their research work and sponsored numerous students from third world countries to attend fisheries conferences.  He was an active participant in ASFB conferences for many years as a member and as a tradeshow participant and speaker at the 1988 workshop on tagging.  In recognition of his father’s desire to support future fisheries professionals, David established the Michael Hall Student Award in 2006 which is an annual $500 award to the most innovative undergraduate proposal as assessed by the ASFB committee.

David Hall, Managing Director
Hallprint Pty Ltd
Victor Harbour, SA
June 2008