2018 ACT Young Australian of the Year
The Process Of Taking Control
Zack has been a homeless teenager, an Australian soldier in Afghanistan, a gridiron player for Australia, a Churchill Fellow, and he is also an award winning youth worker, where he helped at risk youth to identify their goals and take steps to achieve them and was awarded ACT Young Australian of the Year 2018. Through these experiences Zack has learnt some hard truths. How do we take control of our lives? How do we break through the limits we set ourselves? Zack uses these questions and more to help people take control of their professional and personal lives through achieving what some may think are impossible goals. Zack believes the process is more beneficial than the actual achievement. In order to break the limits we place on ourselves we have to prove ourselves wrong. The process is about behaviour. This is the only thing we can control in our lives and Zack will show you how to use this to your advantage.
Domestic Violence survivor, homelessness, Afghanistan veteran, Australian Gridiron player, Award winning Youthworker, Churchill Fellow, 2018 ACT Young Australian of the Year.
Fellow, and was an award winning youth worker. Having grown up without a father, Zack and his mum experienced domestic violence and homelessness. After leaving home at 15, Zack couch surfed and spent time on the streets, before he set a goal to join the army which turned his life around. He served in Afghanistan before post-traumatic stress disorder saw him medically discharged. So, Zack set himself another goal - to make the Australian gridiron team within 18 months, even while never having played the sport previously. Remarkably, he was playing in the World Cup in the United States within 17 months. He then trained as a youth worker, and designed a lead a youth program in Canberra which would go on to become a multi award winning program and was featured numerous times on National TV, for its work in identifying at risk youth, helping to find temporary accommodation, overcome drug addictions or transform their lives after time in jail.
In 2017 he was awarded a Winston Churchill Fellowship to research the " Cure Violence" approach to reducing violence within at-risk communities. Where he undertook research in Chicago, Baltimore, New York and Rio de Janeiro, living within severely underprivileged communities and working on the frontline to understand how role models are empowered to use their influence to curb violence in their communities.
During this time Zack watched his mother battle breast cancer along with his youngest daughter who suffers from a brain tumour.
Zack is now using these experiences to design effective and sustainable solutions to address social issues. Zack also uses his experiences to speak to schools, businesses and community groups about his unique world view and attitude toward life.