12 December 2022
I’m from NSW. My tribe is called Boorooberongal, my nation is Darug and our totem is the kangaroo and possum. I am descended from the Yarramundi - Chief of the Darug Nation and son of Gomberee.
My ancestral Great Grandmother was Maria Lock, who was born in 1808 and given the name Maria Cook in 1814, when she was placed at the Native Institution at Parramatta. She is significant in history for being the first student of the Native Institution in Parramatta, where she was a very successful student, the first Aboriginal woman to legally marry a white settler in a church (Robert Lock), and the first Aboriginal woman to be given a land grant.
I started my FIFO career in 2008, working in catering at various mining villages around WA. When I was working at BHP Iron Ore’s Packsaddle village in the Pilbara operating the kitchen, I was able to learn the fundamentals of BHP’s safety culture, systems and ways of working and reporting, which gave me a great understanding of the BHP Way and Charter Values.
I always had an interest in working in the mining team though and hoped that one day I’d get chance to do so. So when I found out that BHP was giving the opportunity to become a part of their family, and I could achieve my goals to work within the mining and production team and not just to cook food for the miners, I took the chance and applied for the traineeship at Mt Keith.
Meeting new people, learning new skills and working with large mining equipment has been a good step in my career change.
I am so happy that I took this chance and grateful to BHP, for taking a chance on me. I have met great people and I feel honoured to be a part of the BHP family.
I’m proud to be an Aboriginal man, and recognised as such. I haven’t told many people about it, that’s why I thought I start with where my family roots come from.
Thank you very much BHP.