Recognising our veterans on Anzac Day

At Aurizon, we are proud of our many employees who have served in the Defence Force before transitioning to a civilian career, and those who continue to serve in a Reservist capacity. At our Stanwell Depot, west of Rockhampton in Queensland, two of our employees proudly served their respective countries before transitioning to careers outside of the military.

Rebecca Hustwick is one of our Regional Operations Leaders at the depot and is responsible for the day-to-day operational management of the train crew that service our coal customers on the Blackwater system. Rebecca served with the New Zealand Army for 9 ½ years, spending most of her military career as a Chef cooking meals ranging from Silver Service to field cooking. Rebecca served in Bougainville as part of the Truce Keeping Force. Her final role was as a Prison Warden at a time when females were first being sentenced in Military Prisons.

Glen Farrand is responsible for training the Stanwell Depot train drivers to operate our coal trains safely and efficiently. Glen served in the Royal Australian Infantry and as part of the Special Forces Commando for 20 years in both Reserves and the Regular Army. During his career, Glen served in East Timor twice and also did a tour to Iraq. Highlights also included being able to see other parts of Australia and the world while on exercise.

Rebecca says there are many skills and attributes that are learned in the military are applicable to our operations. She cites the training skills, maintenance and safety with vehicles/weapons/equipment, time management, team over individual, setting objectives and planning to achieve, and an overall sense of pride in your work.

Rebecca and Glen both agree that they have been able to bring their strong work ethic, ability to work in a team and the discipline they learned in the military to their current roles. In particular, they say applying procedures to get jobs done safely and efficiently is critical in keeping our operations moving.

Recognising the skills and experience veterans bring to our Company, we have recently signed the Veteran’s Employment Commitment to demonstrate our ongoing support in employing veterans at Aurizon.

We understand it can take time to transition to civilian life after a military career. Rebecca says for her one of the biggest challenges was changing her leadership style, however the Army gave her the skills to adapt to changes quickly and she has enjoyed working with a diverse range of personalities, experience, age and backgrounds. At Aurizon, she’s enjoying the opportunity and support to make changes that shape the culture of our workforce for the future.

Glen says one of his challenges was adapting to the change of pace and accept that no other job would provide him with the same variety, excitement and sense of purpose as his military career. However, he says he enjoys the conditions at Aurizon and the fact that he doesn’t have to spend months away from home each year.

For current serving members considering a career in the rail industry, Glen’s advice is to get your qualifications converted to the civilian equivalent, which he says can make a difference between getting an interview or not. Rebecca reaffirms that Military skills and attributes are highly valued in the rail industry and easily adaptable. She recommends bringing your willingness to learn, work ethic, fresh ideas and views and of course an open mind.

As we mark Anzac Day tomorrow, Rebecca and Glen shared what this important day means to them.

Rebecca Hustwick, ex-New Zealand Army

“Every year while in the New Zealand Army I was either cooking the gunfire breakfast, preparing the rum and coffees, participating in Dawn Services and attending a Returned Services Association (RSA). It was important that every RSA in New Zealand had serving Defence members in attendance on Anzac Day to spend time with those that had served. Thanking them, listening to their stories and commemorating those that have passed was always a highlight to the day. For some of them it was the one and only day they would talk about their experiences; so being there was important.

Anzac Day is not the only day that I think about what sacrifices were made and I still struggle to understand the bravery of the decisions that were made by ordinary young men and women. Would I do the same?”

Glen Farrands, ex-Australian Army

“For me it’s the most important day of the year. It is about remembering the friends and colleagues who have died and those whose lives have irreversibly changed through loss or wounds received.”

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