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Posted by: Madison Sport Pty Ltd on 11/10/2017

JT scoops up top Queenslander award

JT scoops up top Queenslander award

Queensland's Australian of the Year for 2018 is star footballer Johanathan Thurston, who is also in line for the Australian of the Year award.

The North Queensland Cowboys and Maroons star is praised for using his high sporting profile to help indigenous people throughout the state reach their full potential.

Thurston, 34, has championed Indigenous education through Achieving Results Through Indigenous Education Academy, is the face of Synapse's campaign to prevent acquired brain injury in the Aboriginal communities and actively supports the Beanies for Brain Cancer initiative.

Thurston is also an ambassador for the Queensland Reconciliation Awards and for the Apunipima Cape York Health Council's anti-ice campaign.

In 2017, Thurston helped launch the $9.5 million NRL Cowboys House, a home for 50 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students from remote North Queensland.

"I'm very passionate about my culture and trying to inspire the next generation of my culture and young Australians," he said.

“I'm in a privileged position playing rugby league and I understand my role within the community that I have and the impact that I can have on the community and I don't take that lightly."

• JT is pictured wearing an NRL headguard from his long-term sponsor, Brisbane–based Madison Sport, sponsoring him from the age of 16.