Paul Ramsay kept an unusually low profile for a man who ultimately pulled significant strings and whose businesses interacted with thousands of Australians everyday. He was the billionaire mogul behind Ramsay health care centres, hospitals and aged care facilities. He was, for a time, one of the biggest donors to the Liberal Party and was a mover and shaker with prime ministers and presidents alike.
However his quiet life is being eclipsed by controversy following his death, and ultimately his unfinished will. Ramsay has now become synonymous with the Centre for Western Civilisation set up in his name, which has sparked a culture war and driven a wedge between his friends and supporters. A public fight has erupted between the Centre and his foundation who are trying to interpret his wishes, honor his legacy and spend his fortune. This series INQ seeks to understand the man behind the recent headlines. Who was Paul Ramsay in business, in politics and in his personal life?
Who exactly was Paul Ramsay? Why did he remain virtually unknown to the Australian public? And why is his legacy mired in the kind of controversy he never attracted in life?
Paul Ramsay left no specific instructions for how his $3 billion estate should be spent. This created a vacuum into which friends and associates stepped, arguing their own interpretations of Ramsay’s final wishes.
Paul Ramsay's influence wasn't just confined to our shores, he also had a number of business interests in the US and owned a plantation in Louisiana, casting some perspective on his 'western values'.