Geelong Victorious In Football and Politics

This week Geelong celebrates another AFL victory with a decisive win over Essendon. Earlier in the week a quiet victory for Geelong was played out on the veranda of the Queensland Parliament building.

Back in April when the Federal Budget announcement was filling the media a previously unknown Queensland politician made headlines in Geelong.

Responding to a Budget promise to build a fast rail link between Geelong and Melbourne, Queensland Government Minister, Cameron Dick suggested the money would be better spent in his state.

Unfortunately Minister Dick chose to expand on his proposal by telling the Queensland Parliament “Geelong is a place that no-one wants to visit . Even people from Geelong don’t want a fast rail to Geelong — except perhaps for one person — Sarah Henderson, who is Josh Frydenberg’s factional ally sitting on a wafer-thin margin of 3 per cent.”

Despite an attempt to explain his perspective to 3AW’s Tom Elliott
Cameron Dick was kicked “out of bounds” by a tirade of emails and social media commentary. As a Geelong born Queenslander I added my voice to the defense of my birth city.

I challenged Cameron Dick to at least honour the city with a photo shoot taken with a true blue Pivotonian. Minister Dick not only agreed to this conciliatory suggestion, he also offered to eat some “humble pie” in response to the public outcry from Corio Bay.

Safe Schools Coalition

downloadI was a student at St Joseph’s College Geelong from 1965-1970. They were days when it was not safe to even hint of your interest and orientation being different to the dominant culture. They were days of silent loneliness and anxious awareness. As young men of that era we didn’t show any affection to each other regardless of our sexuality. The Catholicism we encountered also failed to engage us in a healthy body image or intimacy.

Now an older gay man and a life member of the St Joseph’s College Old Collegians I am welcomed back to share my journey with a new generation of young men who comfortably express their affection for each other and have built a community that welcomes diversity and challenges abuse and bullying.

The Safe Schools Coalition offers an opportunity for students and staff to create communities that are healthy, welcoming and as in the case of my alma mater, affirming of the wonderful spectrum of masculinity.

I applaud the decision of Paul Tobias, the staff and community at SJC Geelong to implement this program. I hope my family and friends in Geelong will also stand by the College in the face of the fear and intolerance of those who oppose the Safe Schools Coalition.
‪#‎sjcgeelong‬ ‪#‎safeschoolscoalition‬


Media Release: Brisbane Activist Returns to Birth City for Reconciliation Week


Plaque acknowledging Wanthaurong Peoples in grounds of St Mary’s Basilica Geelong

MEDIA RELEASE: 29 May 2015

(For immediate distribution)

Brisbane Activist Returns to Birth City for Reconciliation Week

Brisbane social activist and photographer, Tony Robertson will attend his first Koori  event in his birth city of Geelong this week.

Mr Robertson with some of his family members who live in Geelong   will attend  Reconciliation in the Park  at Johnstone Park on Sunday 31st May from 10.00am-3.00pm

Reconciliation in the Park is a collaborative event  supported by Geelong One Fire Reconciliation Group & Wathaurong Aboriginal Co-operative Ltd with The Gordon, Geelong Gallery & Narana Creations

“I am excited to join the celebrations  during National Reconciliation Week with the local  First Nations peoples  about  whom nothing was taught when I was a young student in Geelong in the 1960s.” he said.

Mr Robertson lived in Geelong from 1953 – 1971 attending school at St Patrick’s Primary in Geelong West and St. Joseph’s College , Newtown.

“This was an era when one of my local footy heroes was “ Polly” Farmer yet I never once heard any reference to his Aboriginal origins. Now when I visit Geelong I am proud to see  a public acknowledgement of the Wathaurong  people in the grounds of St Mary’s Basilica” he said.

Mr Robertson has photographed and documented First Nations peoples  in his home city of Brisbane  as well as a series in the Ltyentye Apurte (Santa Teresa) community in the Northern Territory. One of his Indigenous  political images has recently featured in an exhibition at the British Museum.

Mr Robertson said: “Although I am visiting Geelong for my Year 12 reunion, the opportunity to attend my first Koori event in my birth city marks another milestone for me “


Tony Robertson

M: 0417 792 509


A Gay Homecoming In Geelong

Brisbane Gay activist, Tony Robertson will attend his first public LGBTI  event in his birth city of Geelong this week.
Mr Robertson will join the 18th birthday celebrations for gasp Geelong on Tuesday 11 November.
The  gasp project provides respectful and safe environments that assist in improving the health and wellbeing of same sex attracted and sex and gender diverse young people.
“I am excited to join the celebrations for a service that was not available when I was a young gay teen in Geelong during the late 60s ” he said.
Mr Robertson lived in Geelong from 1953 – 1972 attending school at St Patrick’s Primary in Geelong West and St. Joseph’s College , Newtown.

“This was an era where the local community did not have the language or culture to embrace issues of diverse sexuality” he said.

Mr Robertson has previously visited St. Joseph’s College as a life member of the Old Collegians to show his support for the inclusion of the International Day Against Homophobiain the annual calendar of student activities.

“I am proud that my birth city now has a safe public space for young people to find support and solidarity as they discover the joy of sexuality in all its diversity and identity.” He said.

Read interview with The Geelong Advertiser, November 15 2014 here