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Enhancing the lifestyle, independence & ambitions of people with disability

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Tony talks the gift of teaching

14th April 2022

McIntyre Centre Manager Tony smiles at the camera while wearing a cowboy hat and leaning against a thick wooden railing. The fields of McIntyre Centre are shown in the background.
Pictured: McIntyre Centre Manager Tony.

From cattle stations to the classroom McIntyre Centre's resident cowboy Tony has always maintained a connection with the land. When a new opportunity came knocking that combined his love for teaching with his favourite four-legged companions Tony discovered a whole new meaning to the words 'living the dream'. 

Tell us a little about your background
Grew up in a small country town an hour west of Brisbane and spent the majority of my working life on cattle stations working with cattle and horses. In recent years I shifted from doing, to teaching people how to work on stations with Charles Darwin University. That was the impetus to start my career as a teacher. Spent 7 years teaching science and Agricultural Science before moving back to the land and then starting work at HELP's McIntyre Centre.

What led you to join the HELP team?
I moved back to South East Queensland to be closer to family and needed a job that was close to home, in an industry that I enjoyed and McIntyre Centre offered that.

What are you most passionate about?
It took me a long time to realise but I’m most passionate about teaching and seeing people learn and develop.

On the weekend you’ll find me...
Either in my shed building a saddle and tack or on a horse working cattle or competing at a Campdraft.

What’s the best part of the job?
Definitely the people. Our participants are some of the most incredible people I’ve ever met. 

What’s your favourite HELP memory?
The first participant I met at the Centre introduced himself to me and asked me how I was. I was said I was good and asked how he was. He looked up at me from his wheelchair and said, “I can’t complain!”  That moment was a reality check for me and for the last ‘almost four years’, I have made a conscious decision to have a positive outlook on life. 

3 fun facts about me. 

  1. I was a teacher but I hate speaking to audiences
  2. I share a birthday with Tom Cruise
  3. I’m very much a country boy but I’m not a fan of country music!

If you could invite any three people to dinner living or dead who would they be?
Honestly, I would prefer to eat alone and have all the food to myself!

What’s your secret talent?
I’m the only person I know that can sharpen a knife and make it blunter than it was before I started. 

Favourite place in the world?
On a horse, in a paddock, surrounded by cows.

Favourite Quote?
 “Living the Dream”


Discover a new career in the life-changing care industry. 

Explore HELP's McIntyre Centre, or visit our Careers page to view current job vacancies.