Phil Gould AM
Phil Gould AM, has made an extraordinary difference to the welfare of children, young people and families. Most people know Phil as General Manager of Penrith Panthers, a former rugby league playing great, a league administrator, journalist, television presenter and coach of State of Origin and Premiership winners. He is also a person who truly cares about people. Be it struggling young people who need his mentoring or families going through tough times, Phil is always willing to help, to encourage and to acknowledge the contribution of others doing likewise. His dedication, generosity and determination to provide services in the fields of Rugby League, Youth and Sport has been inspiring.
Phil grew up in Western Sydney and played juniors for Wentworthville Leagues. In 1976 he was selected to represent Penrith in lower grades and by 1979 was elevated to first grade. At 20 he was the youngest NSW rugby league premiership captain since the 1930s. Overall Phil made 104 first grade appearances across four clubs.
Phil coached Canterbury to NRL Premiership victory in 1988 and Penrith to victory in 1991. He coached the NSW State of Origin team 1992, 1993,1994 and 1996. He again coached the Blues from 2002 to 2004 to wins in two series and a draw in the third. This record made Phil the most successful NSW State of Origin team coach ever.
A Penrith man through and through, Phil answered the call of adoring Penrith supporters and became their club’s General Manager in 2011, inspiring, motivating and teaching the players and fans. He helped spearhead Panthers on the Prowl, a community development foundation helping young people by diverting them from risky behaviour into education. It promotes learning, self-esteem, social skills, resilience, healthy lifestyles and functional literacy. He has passionately supported the National Centre of Indigenous Excellence in Penrith and the government of Papua New Guinea’s programs that use the sport of rugby league to unite and develop a Nation of some 800 different tribes and languages.
His community development and charitable activities include visiting and organising other rugby league legends to visit sick kids in the Randwick Childrens' Hospital and, as an Ambassador for Bravehearts Child Protection and the White Ribbon Foundation, helping in the prevention of violence against women and children. He supports fundraising for homeless people, women with breast cancer autism research hearing impairment and recovery after natural disasters.