"The past is never fully gone. It is absorbed into the present and the future. It stays to shape what we are and what we do."
Sir William Deane, Governor-General of Australia, Inaugural Vincent Lingiari Memorial Lecture, August 1996.

John Taylor

John graduated from Creswick in 1964 and from Melbourne University in 1967. He worked for the Forests Commission in Research, Working Plans, FEAR and Statutory Planning branches. From 1971 to 1978 he was a research officer at the Land Conservation Council. In 1986 John became Manager of the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne, and in 1993 Director of Parks and Gardens with Brisbane City Council.

In retirement John returned to forestry, and with his wife, owns some dry sclerophyll forest and a spotted gum plantation in northern New South Wales which are managed for wood production.

Arthur Webb

After leaving Creswick in 1953, Arthur spent a total of seven years in the Division of Forest Management (three of those in Assessment and four subsequently as Forest Assessor), two years at Melbourne University, followed by two years in the Division of Forest Operations as OIC East Warburton and Acting District Forester, Upper Yarra District. This was followed by ten years as a field- based research officer in the Central Division, working on Ash-type regrowth. Arthur finally completed his 37 years of service with 13 years in the Division of Economic and Marketing. His tertiary qualifications include Master of Science in Forestry and the Diploma Forestry Oxford. In 1968 he was awarded a Churchill Fellowship and, in 1969, he was awarded the Russell Grimwade Scholarship.

Murray Thompson


Murray Thompson graduated from the Victorian School of Forestry in 1935 and was awarded the Diploma of Forestry Victoria in 1952, following submission of his thesis on Forest Fire Prevention and Control in the Cann Valley Forest District. After graduation he was posted to Beaufort then Bendigo, Yarram to Taggerty as Assistant Forester in 1937. He was in Narbethong during the 1939 fires, then in Echuca, Forest Assessment (in Orbost), Tanjil Bren, Cohuna and Kinglake where he supervised a POW camp. Murray was promoted to District Forester in Cann River in 1945, and was then DFO in Beechworth in 1951, Heathcote in 1953 and Beaufort in 1955. He was promoted to Assistant Divisional Forester in Healesville in 1959 and to Divisional Forester in Ballarat in 1966. He retired in 1975.


Phil Whiteman

Phil graduated from ANU Forestry in 1981 and Monash University in 1994, and he spent the first three years working for CSIRO on genetics and seed collection programs in Traralgon and Canberra.

For the next 17 years he worked for APM Forests (aka APMF, Amcor Plantations, Australian Paper Plantations), for about a decade in nurseries and research and then eight years in plantation operations.

After APMF was purchased by Hancock Victorian Plantations (HVP) in 2001, and initially known as Grand Ridge Plantations, Phil was Gippsland Plantation Manager for 11 years.

He then moved to Melbourne for six years as HVP's Environment and Certification Manager and he is still (in 2019) in that role although he moved back to Gippsland in 2018.