Young gun makes dad proud

Big Rigs - - READER CORNER - Brent Davison

THOMASIN (“just call me Thomi”) Keogh is a young woman go­ing places in the road trans­port in­dus­try, a per­son for whom there are not enough hours in a day, nor days in a week.

Seem­ingly born with a steer­ing wheel clasped firmly in her hands, the truckie’s daugh­ter is now hu­man re­sources man­ager at Queens­land’s Wick­ham Freight Lines.

Work­ing from the com­pany’s War­wick head­quar­ters – vir­tu­ally at the junc­tion of the Cun­ning­ham and New Eng­land high­ways – the 24-year-old is re­spon­si­ble for strate­gic plan­ning and de­vel­op­ment and pol­icy im­ple­men­ta­tion, work­ing with the com­pany’s ex­ec­u­tive man­age­ment team to for­mu­late and de­liver work­place poli­cies for the com­pany’s 400 em­ploy­ees.

Named as one of the Queens­land trans­port in­dus­try’s young up-and-com­ers by the Queens­land Truck­ing As­so­ci­a­tion, she was re­cently pre­sented with a QTA Daim­ler Emerg­ing Leader Schol­ar­ship at its re­cent awards night.

The only fe­male schol­ar­ship re­cip­i­ent in the five-strong win­ning group, she will be given tai­lored coach­ing ses­sions across a range of busi­ness dis­ci­plines from busi­ness man­age­ment to mar­ket­ing.

She will also be men­tored by in­dus­try lead­ers and was given $1000 for lead­er­ship de­vel­op­ment.

Thomi has two pro­fes­sional goals in her sights: to en­cour­age more women into the in­dus­try and to ad­dress on­go­ing change and plan for the chal­lenges that will need to be faced.

“I be­lieve we need more ex­po­sure to what the in­dus­try is be­com­ing,” she said.

“The in­dus­try now re­quires so many more skillsets that weren’t needed five or 10 years ago. We’re mov­ing into more and more tech­nol­ogy with both hard­ware and soft­ware, so­cial me­dia mar­ket­ing, work­shop and me­chan­i­cal in­no­va­tion, fi­nance, IT, HR – the list goes on.

“The in­dus­try can cater for women be­gin­ning their ca­reers or start­ing a fam­ily. It’s very ac­com­mo­dat­ing and gen­er­ous to ev­ery­one in­volved, male or fe­male.”

A Univer­sity of Queens­land grad­u­ate, Thomasin started with Wick­ham Freight as a hu­man Re­sources of­fi­cer al­most two years ago.

“I knew I wanted to be in an HR po­si­tion and I wanted to be in the trans­port in­dus­try. I have al­ways been around trucks and heav­ily in­volved in the in­dus­try from a young age. My fa­ther, Gra­ham Keogh, started driv­ing trucks when he was 17,” she said.

“I re­ally can’t imag­ine any other in­dus­try that’s any more ex­cit­ing.”

Un­like many of us who call time when the clock hits knock-off hour, Thomasin takes her work home with her, gath­er­ing her pa­per­work and lap­top to do a lit­tle bit more after din­ner.

She is cur­rently work­ing on the de­vel­op­ment of a schol­ar­ship aimed at de­vel­op­ing pro­fes­sion­al­ism within the in­dus­try, with plans to roll it out at the start of the new year.


ROLE MODEL: Thomi can’t imag­ine a more ex­cit­ing in­dus­try to work in.

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