to G’day there
Innes Larkin here, and I’m stepping up to represent you as an independent in the Electorate of Wright.
I was born in Brisbane in 1972 to John and Jenny Larkin, and grew up in the outer suburb of Brookfield with creeks and acreage and enjoyed a great childhood. I followed my dad through the National Parks of Australia. I have two sisters Bronwyn and Elizabeth who live in Sydney and Brisbane respectively.
I attended primary school at Brookfield State School and then high school at St Peters Lutheran College, I was elected as a prefect and spent every spare moment playing sport.
I was a part of the scouting movement and the outdoors was a big part of my life outside school. I spent my early teens walking in Tasmania, canoeing down the Nymboida River, rock climbing in the Glasshouse Mountains or at Kangaroo Pt, and I climbed every mountain that SE Qld had to offer.
One region I remember being very attached to was the Scenic Rim, and I first climbed Mt Barney at age 10 with a feeling of awe at this majestic peak and the surrounding countryside. That awe never left me, and is a large part of my choice to run as an independent.
I spent 4 years studying at the University of Queensland undertaking a Bachelor of Human Movement Studies in Education. There I met my future wife Tracey. While I was studying my parents were setting up Mt Barney Lodge, the first tourist accommodation in the Mt Barney region.
After graduation I saved a bit of money and headed over to London to meet up with Tracey and teach and travel across Europe. This further built my love of the outdoors with some memorable hiking trips in European mountains.
I returned home and married Tracey in 1997, and I gained employment at St Peters Lutheran College as a PE/Maths Teacher, rugby coach, and tennis coordinator. Soon after, our new family came along – Caitlyn and Connor. I also studied part-time to complete a Masters in Outdoor Education at Griffith University and used that to gain employment at Gregory Terrace Outdoor Education Centre on Maroon Dam in 2000.
In 2003 Tracey and I managed Mt Barney Lodge, and then purchased it in 2006. I did all the paperwork to accredit Mt Barney Lodge with ecotourism in 1996, and later under our watch it gained Advanced Ecotourism Accreditation. We are known to offer award winning accommodation and adventure experiences from the Lodge, and in 2019 Mt Barney Lodge won the Scenic Rim Business Awards in “Tourism, Accommodation and Hospitality”.
I am the spokesperson for the community group Keep The Scenic Rim Scenic which undertook peaceful protest that successfully protected the whole Scenic Rim from coal and coal seam gas development in 2012 when council and our local state and federal members of parliament did not represent us when asked.
I have been a member of the community advisory committee for the Gondwanan Rainforests of Australia World Heritage property for 5 years, and a board member of Ecotourism Australia for nearly 3 years. I have made representations to parliament many times, including a parliamentary enquiry. I am experienced and comfortable with media having gained these skills in the course of being in the tourism industry for 18 years. Public speaking is one of my strengths. I have a reputation of speaking out and speaking up when it is needed.
I believe I have the personal experience and skills to represent you as your federal representative, and I invite you to elect me to the job.
I am running as atrue Independent, that is why I am not giving any preferences to any party, or even suggesting to you how you should vote. In this way you too are able to make your own independent choice. See the bottom of my principles page in the Q & A answers for more detail on this and other live questions that have been put to me by the community over the past 3 weeks.
Michael Groom is a Professional Speaker and mountain climber and is unquestionably one of the world’s greatest big mountain climbers.
In 1995 he became the fourth person in the world to climb the four highest mountains without the assistance of bottled oxygen and in 1999 he successfully climbed Makalu, the smallest but for Michael, the last of the ‘big five’ – the five highest mountains in the world. Makalu, Lhotse, Kanchenjunga, K2 and Everest – Michael climbed them all without the assistance of bottled oxygen, and all but Kangchenjunga he climbed without the front third of both feet.
I have known Innes since he was a High School student. I have known his parents since I was in Primary School.
Our appreciation for Mother Nature and our love of the outdoors has brought us together on so many occasions.
His composure under pressure while rock climbing on a technically challenging climb with the added potentially of a dangerous fall has always made Innes my first choice when selecting my team members for a climbing expedition to the Himalayas.
But most importantly his consideration for his fellow teammates in difficult and trying times and his never ending request for
‘’Can I do anything to help?’’ is the type of teammate that I want on my expeditions.
Ben Southall is a presenter, digital journalist and adventurer. His achievements include beating 35,000 to win the Best Job in the World in 2009 and became the ‘Caretaker of the Islands of the Great Barrier Reef’ in Australia
Ben Southall “Winner of Tourism Events Queensland’s ‘Best Job in the World’ campaign says “If anyone can make being a politician fun and change the culture, it is Innes. Having worked with Innes filming, adventuring and exploring his local mountains I know there he has energy and passion to share, and I hope he succeeds in his aim to make a positive change.”
Sofie Formica is a trusted media personality, highly sort MC and facilitator across the private, corporate and government sectors.
“I first had the privilege of getting to know Innes and his family in my role as a TV presenter showcasing Mt Barney Eco Lodge as a family friendly holiday destination, over the last ten years he has grown to become a valued and trusted friend. Innes is much more than a passionate and successful business owner. There is a long list of reasons why I believe Innes would be worthy to represent the people of Wright and his ability to influence and lead is not just based on his skill or intelligence; it’s based on trust and requires integrity, which I believe is the foundation of real and meaningful influence. Integrity is the base from which leadership should be built and is desperately needed in the current political climate, I know Innes has a vision for the region and the country that is sustainable and inclusive.”