Last Friday night a few of us from the sport community were privileged to be invited to farewell Queensland’s Chief Scientist Geoff Garrett AO. Geoff has served in the role for the past six years working closely with industry, universities and the public service in Queensland as a passionate and engaging advocate for the sciences. A testament to this was the bi partisan support (a good humour amongst our representatives) for the event with the current and shadow minister for innovation hosting the proceedings and many former politicians and a former premier all in attendance. Frequent themes among the speeches were the effect Geoff has had on increasing engagement in science across Queensland from school children to public servants. Geoff, well known for having a quote for every occasion was treated to something of a quote fest as speaker after speaker recalled their favourite anecdotes.
We thank Geoff for being an advocate for sport and sciences during his term as Chief Scientist, culminating with his Sports science challenge initiative (and grant scheme) launched recently at parliament house.
In his closing remarks Geoff addressed the importance of STEM in todays society and wished for an end to the adversarial style of politics in our country as it can often work against our best interests (I saw the colour rise in a few politicians as he said this)
Incoming chief scientist Suzanne Miller, currently director of the Queensland Museum (where the proceedings were hosted) wowed the gathering when she named a newly discovered spider (found in North Queensland which was known for its tenacity and playing a vital role in creating an eco-system for supporting many other species) after Geoff who is on the left below with fellow sports enthusiasts including Anne-Marie White, Sue Hooper and Allan Hahn.
Thank you Geoff for all your support and inspirational enthusiasm !