Territory Stories

Debates Day 3 - Thursday 1 May 2003



Debates Day 3 - Thursday 1 May 2003

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Parliamentary Record 11


Debates for 9th Assembly 2001 - 2005; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 9th Assembly 2001 - 2005




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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DEBATES - Thursday 1 May 2003 pastoralists with regards to where to site their bores and how much water they would be able to get. He has also contributed to community life in Darwin through, among other things, his musical contribution to the annual India on Mindil Festival. Mick retired from the public service on 21 March. Another public servant who has retired from the Northern Territory Public Service is Roy Scott, who joined the Australian Public Service in 1975 as a storeman, dedicated to the removal and storage of personal effects from homes of residents who evacuated Darwin after Cyclone Tracy. Roy was transferred to the Department of Transport and Works in 1985 and, during this time, he was located at the old government accommodation of Ward, Brennan and Wells buildings. In 1991, Public Works Division moved to Highway House in Palmerston and Roy, once again, relocated with the division. He was working there until his retirement. Roy is highly regarded throughout the organisation by clients and contractors. He has always been the type of employee who is willing to get the job done with a minimum of fuss. He has always willingly assisted employees in the section by providing necessary training and transfer of information and experience. He retired after 28 years in the public service. Don Langford retired on 15 April 2003 after 20 years service with Parks and Wildlife and its predecessors. Don came to Alice Springs in 1974 to work as a teacher at Alice Springs High School and Yirara College. Don and his wife Linda were house parents at St Marys Village and they later raised two boys in Alice Springs. Don joined the Conservation Commission in 1983 as a Technical Officer 1. During the early years with the commission, Don worked on fauna surveys, particularly in the Gulf country. He maintained the AZRI laboratory, and was also responsible for maintaining the population of Mala at the laboratory area. He was instrumental in manipulating breeding pairs for optimal genetic diversity, as well as supervising the contract staff responsible for the daily care of the animals. He also took responsibility for the captive population of Mala held at the Yinapaka Mala Paddock in the Tanami Desert. Don was appointed to a temporary Acting T3 position in Darwin with the Heritage Conservation Unit, demonstrating his love of history. For a period, Don acted in a T4 position, during which time he was the Chairperson o f the National Mala Recovery Team. In his role, he brought together experts from across Australia to focus attention on the plight of this endangered animal. He was also responsible for drafting the Mala Recovery Plan. Don spent a lot of time in the Tanami and also helped very much to save the endangered species in relocating them to alternative sites. He worked very closely with the Conservation and Land Management in Western Australia, where Mala were introduced to Trimouille Island, and reintroduced to Dryandra and Perron Peninsula - a very significant project for rescuing this endangered species. More recently, Don undertook a supervisory role in the Finke bioregion fauna surveys, and he assisted the Endangered Species Officer with his considerable expertise. Don was always ready to do more than his share of any task. These achievements are all the more remarkable when it is understood that Dons formal training was as a geomorphologist/teacher, not a biologist. Among Dons greatest assets are his cheerful disposition, gentle nature, empathy, diplomacy, and his rapport with Aboriginal people. Don has travelled widely in Central Australia and has visited many historical European and Aboriginal sites of importance. Don has a great interest in history: Central Australia, Australia, and the world. He is an avid reader of historical and environmental books. A funny story came to my attention: Don and a colleague were to do some trapping at the top of Hugh Gorge in the West MacDonnell Ranges. As it was a three-hour walk from the vehicle, it was not feasible to carry traps, swags, food, etcetera, to the site so the gear was taken in by helicopter. Don and his companion set off for the site but, on their way, Don took the wrong turn up a gully. They reached the top of the gully but could not fmd the traps or other gear, despite searching around the area. It was getting late and the weather was deteriorating, so they decided to walk back to the vehicle. On their way down the gully, it started to rain. The two travellers arrived back at the vehicle wet, cold and hungry. However, their food and swags were up Hugh Gorge. The two spent a veiy uncomfortable night huddled in the vehicle trying to keep warm. The next day, Don was shown his error in navigation and the gully he mistook for Hugh Gorge is now called Dons Folly. The trip was not a disaster though; Don discovered the largest known population of a rare land snail. Don Langford plans to stay in Alice Springs for some time after his retirement, but he will be deeply missed by his work colleagues. Congratulations to 3993

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