Former Olympian Julie McDonald has had a successful career in the pool, representing Australia in swimming in every Australian Team from 1986 until 1992, captaining two of these teams. In recent years, Julie has returned to dry land and is forging a successful career, using her time as an elite athlete to motivate and inspire.

Her business, Mightymac Promotions, offers women support with hormonal health. The company has a division in natural medicine, which promotes alternative therapies. Recently, Julie was on the Legacy Advisory Committee for the 2018 Commonwealth Games, whose key role was to create lasting legacies from the event. She also works with athletes on their recovery and athletic performance and with people who have health issues, helping them increase their cellular renewal rates and empowering the body to heal itself. Additionally, Julie regularly appears as a corporate and motivaional speaker.

Charity work has been a constant in her life, donating time to different organisations such as the Justin Cameron Cancer Care Foundation, Queensland Olympic Council, McHappy Day, Nyngan Flood Relief, Queensland Cerebral Palsy Association, Qld Paralympic Committee.Recently, Julie has been working with Beyond DV.  This charitable organisation empowers women to reclaim their life after leaving violent relationships. The organisation, founded by Carolyn Robinson, is important to Julie, having herself escaped from a bad relationship. “I had a phone call from Carolyn, and from talking to her, I realised that I had been in a domestic violence relationship,” Julie said. Her expertise complement the other services offered by Beyond DV, which include offering help with clothing, hairstyling and make up tips. “I help women with goal setting and self belief, two really important things when rebuilding your life.”

Julie held the Commonwealth record for the 800 metre Freestyle for 21 years, and still holds the fourth top time Australia has ever produced. Julie is a dual Olympian competing in 1988 and 1992, a dual Commonwealth Games representative in 1986 and 1990, a dual Pan Pacific Championship representative in 1987 and 1989 and a dual World Championship participant in 1986 and 1991. She was the only Australian female to win an Olympic Medal at the 1988 Seoul Olympics, winning a Bronze medal in the 800 metres freestyle.

She has had a colourful history with her swimming and broken down many barriers she has faced. In 1995, after a three year break from swimming, she recommenced training for her third Olympics but missed out on qualifiers by one place. In total Julie represented Australia 13 times including Invitational Swim Meets. Brisbane Swimming Association has named a swimming carnival in her honour, The Julie McDonald Cup, which is held annually.

In June 2006 Julie received a Queens Birthday Award, an OAM for her services to Swimming, The Olympic Movement and Charities. In 2008, Julie took up a position as board member of Melanoma Patients Australia, raising  funds to host support meetings for sufferers of melanoma. Julie had a melanoma removed in 1997. She is a member of the QLD Olympic Council Board as well as being the President of the Qld Olympians club.

Our readers also enjoyed this story about uplifting activewear.