Best Job winner Elisa Detrez (centre) reports for work and meets Minister for Tourism Jann Stuckey, National Parks Minister Steve Dickson and a shingleback lizard. Picture: Liam Kidston.Source: News Limited
A CHEEKY koala made Elisa Detrez an internet star and now she is ready for anything else Queensland’s flora and fauna can throw at her.
The 29-year-old yesterday reported for duty on her first day as a Queensland park ranger as part of Tourism Australia’s hugely-successful best job in the world competition.
The Frenchwoman beat a field of 100,000 expressions of interest and 10,000 official applications for the coveted position.
She has already achieved internet fame after she was groped by a koala during a photo shoot in the final round of the competition.
Yesterday she handled a shingleback lizard in a photo for The Courier-Mail, but there was no repeat of the koala scandal.
Elisa Detrez with a cheeky koala at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary in the infamous snap that had more than 3000 likes on the Visit Queensland Facebook page. Picture: Eddie Safarik Source:Supplied
“I didn’t realise at the time because the koala was moving around and I was trying to hold it and pose for photos,” she recalled.
“It was only later that people started telling me they had seen the picture and the koala had his hand on my chest.
“Then I saw it and went ‘oh my god’ but it’s OK.
“I’ll be more careful with animals from now on.”
Miss Detrez will spend her six-month post hiking, diving and sailing around some of Queensland’s best national parks in a role as a virtual tourism ambassador.
Tourism minister Jann Stuckey said the exposure generated by Miss Detrez’s time in Australia would be worth a fortune to the Queensland tourism industry.
“She’s not quite our girl in a million, but she’s our girl in 100,000,” she said.
“And she will be worth far more than a million to tourism.”
JEREMY PIERCE TOURISM REPORTER
AUGUST 08, 2013 12:00AM