Sandy is a Guest Lecturer (GL) with Coral Expeditions (CE). He began on the Kimberley cruises in 1998 and has averaged three Darwin-Broome return cruises each year since. He has also been a GL on Cairns to Darwin cruises, ‘Cape York and Arnhem Land’, on about ten occasions. As a CE guest Sandy has also enjoyed the Tasmanian cruise and a cruise to the Spice Islands from Darwin to Biak. Sandy was born in Dublin, spent his early childhood years in Northern Ireland and his family emigrated from there to Batlow, NSW. He attended Armidale Teachers College and after his 11 years of teaching Agriculture and Science subjects at Bega and Dubbo High Schools began lecturing at Armidale College of Advanced Education/University of New England (UNE) for the next 20 years. During his final 10 years in tertiary education he was appointed as Principal of two Residential Colleges at UNE.
He has completed three degrees from UNE culminating with a PhD following research in ecotypic variation in native grasses.
Sandy has a strong interest in understanding the geology and geomorphology of the Kimberley coast. Based on these interests he has had two books published on the area – ‘Kimberley Coast –Bays, Basins, Islands and Estuaries’ 2012 and ‘Around the Kimberley Coast’ 2018. Following his long history with the CE and their various cruise destinations he was invited to prepare and edit a history of the company under the title ‘A Pioneering Cruise Line- An Anthology of Stories’. This was completed in 2019 as a 206page book, with many contributors, multiple illustrations, and compiled with assistance from CE Sales and Marketing staff, for limited distribution by the company.
In addition to the physical landscape he has several other interests and particularly likes visiting Kimberley locations such as Prince Frederick Harbour with its rich natural history and Swift Bay for its diverse Aboriginal rock painting sites. In the plant world he finds understanding the diversity and ecology of mangroves fascinating. As a scientist he says -” I never stop learning and enjoy communicating relatively complex and interesting ideas over a wide variety of topics ranging from the history of exploration, the development of the Horizontal Waterfalls to tracing the ancestry of Aboriginal Australians”. In semi-retirement he continues to work part time as a special-projects consultant for Odyssey Travel. As one of their Program Leaders he has led dozens of groups on thematic tours to the UK and Ireland, and across many countries in Asia from Turkey to Mongolia. Sandy and his wife Margaret live in Glengowrie, SA. They have three adult children who work and reside with their families in both Adelaide and Perth.