Dynamite Doug

Radio 2000 senior content producer Doug Anderson was honoured with the Order of Baobab Silver in December last year. CLAIRE RENCKEN learns more about the man behind the award.

The National Orders Awards ceremony was held at the Sefako Makgatho presidential guest house on December 8, 2015. Doug, a former Radio 2000 presenter, received the award for his excellent contribution to the upliftment of the lives of people with disabilities. “Nkalakatha”, as he is affectionately referred to at Radio 2000, says that he is grateful to the SABC for giving him a platform to address some of the challenges faced by people with disabilities, so that others do not have to experience the same in future.

Doug was born with spina bifida – in his case it resulted in a spinal defect, a hole in his back, damage to the spinal cord, dislocated hips, club feet and water on the brain (hydrocephalus). He underwent multiple surgeries and doctors gave him only a two percent chance of survival.

However, Doug has consistently beaten the odds and has an impressive list of accolades and achievements to his name. His radio career has flourished since 2004 and he is currently senior content producer for Radio 2000. He has also represented his province and country in various wheelchair sports.

When asked what his definition of success is, Doug says: “Success to me is much more than simply achieving something and having ‘things’ and money. Success is about happiness as well. Being happy with who you are, where you are, what you do. People will find themselves in one of five places. The first is that of Survival, when you simply live from pay cheque to pay cheque. The next is that of Success, when you achieve things and gain things.

“Then comes Satisfaction, when you are in a comfortable place with what you have, and what you have achieved. Next comes Significance, where you make a difference through and with your success. Finally, and most importantly, comes Synergetic Significance, where others are inspired to make a difference because of you and with you. We should all strive to be Synergistically Significant.”

He adds: “My late father always said: ‘The bluntest pencil is more accurate than the sharpest mind. Write it down!’ My parents taught me to pay attention to detail and to get things right, first time. I played professional sports for many years. This taught me discipline, perseverance and the ability to get up, dust myself off and try again if need be. I believe in the power of having vision boards as well as the power of daily mantras. Radio has taught me various disciplines – there are no second takes in radio, so you have to get it right first time. It also taught me to think on my feet.”

Doug’s final words of advice are as follows: “Don’t let others limit you! When I was born, doctors said I wouldn’t speak; I wouldn’t be educated and wouldn’t have any quality of life. The biggest lesson I have learnt on my journey is this: you are only limited by the limitations in the minds of others!”

Check out Doug’s website: www.douganderson.co.za

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