After his first time on air Peter Milling was told he didn't have "much of a future in radio".
Almost 75 years on, his rural affairs program still draws in thousands of listeners from across western NSW.
"I've never forgotten those words. It's surprising the number of people from the western and north western areas of the state that know me because of the program," he said.
"I think it's a service that fills the gap for a lot of people because land people are a bit isolated but they like to know what's going on as far as the stock business is concerned and we try to let them know."
Mr Milling - a veteran stock and station agent - was one of two Dubbo locals to receive the Order of Australia Medal this King's Birthday. He was awarded for services to the livestock industry.
"It's quite humbling really, I've been in business for a long time and have always tried to uphold the standards set by my grandfather when he started in 1914 - and I think we've been able to do that," he said.
Mr Milling first went on air on 2DU in 1948 and has presented his show almost every week since - making him one of the longest standing individual broadcasters in Australia.
"The poor people who listen to it every week, I think to myself they can't have much to do," he said.
"The program was started by my father and the owner of 2DU at the time.
"He said to my father that they wanted to have more rural content in their programs and he said he'd do a Saturday morning program which was very successful."
But, like his career on air, Mr Milling's hand in the family business also started out with uncertainty.
"I left school thinking I would be part of the business but my grandfather had 11 children and my father was the eldest of that lot - there didn't seem to be any room for me in the firm," he said.
"Until one day when he was in Sydney, I was about 17 or 18 at the time, and he said 'I'd like to meet you at Circular Quay, I'm buying a new suit for the Dunedoo Show'... Anyhow, that day he said to me 'you're doing an accountancy course aren't you' and I said 'yes I am'.
"He asked me how I was getting on and I said it was very difficult and he said 'give it away, come home and work for me'. He said I would do no good at accountancy and if I want an accountant I should just employ one.
"So I did that, I came home."
Mr Milling remembers his grandfather fondly as a man who always presented himself with class and confidence.
"He was very much a personality. He always wore a suit to work, even in the sale yards he wore a tussar silk black jacket and a cravat and a new grey felt hat," Mr Milling said.
"The greatest thing that's ever happened to me was that my name was Milling and I was in the stock and station agency business.
"I just had to mention the name and everyone knew who I was - it made business easier than someone starting out from scratch.
"My grandfather was a very remarkable man. He had an enormous capacity for people. He seemed to know everybody everywhere - even on a cattle stud over in Scotland people knew who he was."
From just a stock and station agency, the Millings' business diversified under Peter's influence to include dedicated livestock and property selling in 1973, local real estate in 1974 and an international travel agency in 1976.
Outside the family business, Mr Milling served as president on a number of stock and station agency bodies and was instrumental in the development and expansion of the Dubbo Sale Yards, which have grown to become the largest in NSW.
He also made his mark on Dubbo as the inaugural Chairman of the Dubbo Development Corporation from 1977 to 1978.
Some of the changes he helped bring about include bringing natural gas into Dubbo, the establishment of a Charles Sturt University Campus in Dubbo and delivering the first housing development in town with the creation of Delroy Gardens.
"The mayor approached me and asked me if I'd head up the corporation and I said I don't know that much about that kind of thing. And he told me just run it as you'd run your business," he said.
"I had a very great experience in the development corporation and I think it was a remarkable thing for a small place like Dubbo to start."
He and his late wife Toni also played a big part in initiating the restoration of Dundullimal Homestead - the oldest standing pioneer slab dwelling in Australia.
Mr Milling credits his success to the support of his family.
"I've been very, very fortunate in my life I have three beautiful daughters and I had the most unbelievable, magnificent wife for 53 years - she died about 20 years ago," he said
"But that's been my success, the support I had from her. Everything I wanted to do she was 100 per cent behind me."
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