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Community & Business

2 February, 2022

Great recognition for former Cambooya Shire public servant

A former employee of Cambooya Shire Council for over 30 years, Anthony Peter McDonald, was this Australia Day awarded an Order of Australia Medal (OAM) for service to engineering and to the community.

Anthony Peter (Tony) McDonald OAM.

Mr McDonald, a resident of Centenary Heights, said he was very humbled by the recognition.

Beginning in 1977, Mr McDonald worked in a variety of roles including as Overseer of Works, Senior Technical Officer, Manager and Engineering Services until 2011, three years after the Cambooya Shire had been amalgamated into the Toowoomba Region.

He had worked in technical roles for various local governments between 1969 and 1977.

Across the roles, Mr McDonald worked incredibly hard for Cambooya district and its residents to deliver critical public infrastructure and services. 

Long-term residents may recall a time when his home phone number was the after-hours contact for Cambooya Shire Council. 

Tony McDonald would personally respond to midnight calls of overflowing pipes or cattle on the road, frequently attend traffic accidents or flooded roads, plant flowers and trees at the Greenmount Park and build play equipment at Cambooya Park. 

For many years he helped organise the Anzac Day service at Greenmount by closing roads and putting out chairs. 

He would often take councillors on bus tours of the region, explaining current works and future plans. 

Current Toowoomba Region Councillor and former Mayor of Cambooya Shire, Carol Taylor fondly remembered these trips.

Mr McDonald also would often just hold public forums and community consultations ensuring all stakeholders were appraised of important decisions. 

Outside his work, Mr McDonald also coached junior soccer and cricket team, led church youth groups, and served with distinction for many years as president of the P&Cs for both Rangeville State School (1987-1994) and Centenary Heights State School (1994-1999, 2009-2013).

He also has been a Justice of the Peace since 1988, Treasurer of Gipps Street Church of Christ since 1989 and was a member of Cambooya Queensland State Emergency Service from the 1970s to 1990s.

After leaving Toowoomba Regional Council, he worked for Harrison Infrastructure Group, Lockyer Valley Regional Council and part-time for GenEng Solutions, his current role.

Mr McDonald is a former President of the South West Branch, Queensland Division of the Institute of Public Works Engineering Australasia.

He has been a fellow since 2013 and member since 1993.

His other awards and recognition include:

  • Technical Officer of the Year, Institute of Public Works Engineering Australasia, 2009.
  • Queensland Award, Fellow of the Institute of Public Works Engineering Australasia, 2014.
  • Outstanding Service Award, Cambooya Shire Council.
  • Outstanding Service Award, Toowoomba Regional Council.
  • Life Member Centenary Heights State School, Parents and Citizens Association, 2013.
  • Cambooya Citizen of the Year nomination, 2022.

     Do you have any fond memories of Tony McDonald from his time working for the local Council? Please send yours to or to 60 Clark Street, Clifton QLD 4361.

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