I was elected to the Federal Parliament at the July 2 2016 election and am proud to be The Nationals Member for Murray.
I was born in Shepparton, grew up on a dairy farm in Congupna and am the youngest of seven children.
Originally I went to school in Shepparton and spent a couple of years at boarding school before returning to finish my schooling at St Colmans. After finishing school I went on to complete a building apprenticeship.
In 1981, I was drafted by Geelong Football Club. Over the next ten years, I played 63 games, eventually retiring from the AFL at the end of 1990 and joining Victorian Football Association club Werribee.
I also operated my own steel fabrication and construction business in Werribee from 1987 to 1993. In 1993 I took up a coaching position with Port Melbourne in the VFA. Later that year I moved to Sydney, taking up the assistant coach position at the Sydney Swans, under coach Ron Barassi.
In September of 1998 I was appointed Senior Coach of Fremantle for three seasons. In 2002 I moved back to Victoria and took up a position as coach of the Bendigo Diggers VFL team.
In the November 2002 election I ran for The Nationals and won the Victorian Legislative Council seat of North Western Province. This later became the Northern Victoria Region where I served until April 2016.
I was Minister for Sport and Recreation and Minister for Veterans’ Affairs in the Napthine Ministry from March to November 2014. From 2014 to 2016 I was the Shadow Minister for Regional Development, Shadow Minister for Sport and Recreation and Shadow Minister for Veterans’ Affairs.
In April 2016 I relinquished one of the safest seats in the Victorian Parliament to contest and ultimately win the federal seat of Murray.