Meet Dr Katrina Starmer our Photo Competition Winner!

07 December 2023

Blog Images

Our Annual Report Photo Competition has garnered so many quality images from around our beautiful state.

It was again a very tough decision, but we are excited to announce that Dr Katrina Starmer of Cairns has won this year's competition and her stunning photo graces the Health Workforce Queensland 2022-2023 Annual Report Cover.​

Dr Starmer is a rural generalist for the Royal Flying Doctors Service (RFDS) in Cairns, as well as an emergency specialist in Cairns Hospital. She has a rural background and her health care journey has taken her all around Queensland providing her with the opportunity to explore far and wide. Being a keen amateur photographer, Dr Starmer has quite a selection of breathtaking images from her travels and she shares these with us here, and tells us a little about her incredible experiences.

"I do both remote clinics in Chillagoe each fortnight, and statewide telehealth coordination as well as working in Cairns ED.

I come from an extended family of cane farmers but spent my childhood in Townsville. Doing my ACRRM fellowship after becoming a FACEM has allowed me to get my ‘rural fix’ and also feel like I can better understand the needs of people who live in rural and remote Queensland.

It was during a placement in Babinda that I took the photo of the train tracks through the cane fields (main image above). These are cane train tracks for the ‘loco’, carrying cane to the sugar mill. I like to run for exercise, and I try and get out for a short run in the evenings with my on-call phone in my pocket. The sunset inspired me to take this pic with my very sweaty iPhone 13.

Similarly, the photo of the shark was taken while I was doing an evening walk along the beach on Mer (Murray) Island in the Torres Strait. I was doing a clinic up there as part of a stint on Thursday Island. The shark literally beached itself in front of me, trying to feed on small fish. It was at least 2m long and very hungry, but I thankfully managed to not become dessert.

I enjoy taking photos of the adventures we have had while living and working in the bush and am honoured that my photo has been selected by Health Workforce Queensland."

Chillagoe - "Children climb the boughs of a paperbark on the Walsh River in Chillagoe."

Mer (Murray) Island (left) - "It was an incredible moment when a shark swam up onto the beach while feeding on bait fish on Mer Island."
Birdie Creek, Cape York (right) - "This photo shows the wild beauty of Birdie Creek. A skull hangs on a gnarled tree while a little girl swimming lets the cool water wash the day away." Photo credit - Lilah Starmer.

Winton - "Winton is the birthplace of Qantas and a very popular Western Queensland destination."

Richmond - "It’s quite a feat riding a push bike across remote Queensland!"

Cairns - "The tropical beauty of Cairns makes it a very attractive regional location to live and work."

The Torres Strait - "The islands of the Torres strait are mysterious and beautiful with great cultural significance."

Cairns (left) - "A rare cannonball tree."
Atherton Tablelands (right) - "The amazing Mt Quincan Crater on the tablelands."

Karumba, Gulf of Carpentaria - "The children were so excited to see their first sunset over the ocean after driving two weeks to get to Karumba on the western cape."