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Northern Territory Cattlemen's Association

Prestigious emerging leader award announced

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The prestigious Alward Foster Memorial Emerging Indigenous Leader Award was today announce at the NT Cattlemen’s Association’s (NTCA) annual conference in Alice Springs.

The 2021 Alward Foster Award winner is Joseph Gordon, who has been part of the mustering team at Delamere Station during the 2020 season.  Joseph quickly became an integral part of the  stock camp, and with his energy and quiet nature he is a popular and valued member of the team. 

Delamere Station Manager Sandy Watson said Joseph excelled in the cattle yards with his ability and understanding of cattle work.

“With his intricate understanding of livestock, Joseph is well-respected by his peers, and we are excited to have him return in 2021 as a full-time employee,” Mr Watson said.

NTCA Chief Executive Officer Will Evans said the Indigenous people had played a key role in opening the Northern Territory to pastoralists, and the annual Alward Foster Award was awarded “in recognition of the Indigenous people’s value and importance to the industry”.

“Every year the Alward Foster Emerging Indigenous Leader Award recognises a young Indigenous person with the attributes of the Aboriginal stockmen and women who contributed so much to building the cattle industry in the Northern  Territory,” Mr Evans said.

The award is named after the late Alward Foster, who joined the NTCA’s Pastoral Real Jobs Program as an employee on Newry Station on the West  Australian border and later became a full-time NTCA staff member.

His job was to train, mentor and support young Indigenous people in the Real Jobs Program and Indonesian students from the NTCA Indonesian Australia Pastoral Program. 

Alward was a natural born leader, who once went to Canberra and showed then Prime Minister Julia Gillard how to crack a stockwhip.

“In recognition of the value of Indigenous stockmen and women to the cattle industry, the NTCA – with the support of the Indigenous Land and Sea Corporation – has been running its highly successful Indigenous Pastoral Real Jobs Programs since 2008,” Mr Evans said.

The 2021 intake of program participants completed a three-week hands-on training course in Alice Springs earlier this year, before commencing work in their new careers on a range of corporate and family-owned cattle stations across all regions of the NT.

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