IT was 1987 and Liddell power station was a bustling hive of activity.
More than 800 staff were on site and Diane Moriarty had just started as a clerk in the office.
'Upstairs' the "harsh but fair" late John Marcheff ran a tight ship as the power station's manager. At home, he was dad.
"I was a female in a male-dominated world, there were a lot of interesting dynamics," Ms Moriarty said.
"I had to deal with not only being a woman but my dad was the boss, so I had to work twice as hard to prove my own merit and that I was there for me."
And it's exactly what she did, working her way up from administration to chief financial officer of the AGL-owned Macquarie Generation.
In her early career, Ms Moriarty used to have to go up to the control room and check the charts to see how much energy the unit generated, and if it tripped - how long it was out for.
She worked closely with the technical staff and operators and it wasn't unusual for her to be asked to check small spaces in the mills the men struggled to fit into.
Checking tools for all the trades was just part of the job description - even if they'd sometimes show her the wrong ones on purpose.
In those days plumes of smoke would furl across the office from the end of a lit cigarette, at lunch they'd play euchre and wrap up with a friendly game of whatever was going with the engineers in the afternoon.
Ms Moriarty and her father didn't talk shop much at home, but she knew how much he loved the plant and how hard he worked to make it one of the best performing power stations in the country.
"I found myself being quite resilient, and my dad's attributes of being honest and loyal, they all started to come through at that place," Ms Moriarty said.
"It came with its challenges don't get me wrong, but I was fiercely proud of him even if he was regarded as a bit harsh in the early days, he was harsh but fair and I think fair is exactly how to describe him.
"He saw in people their strengths and played to them, he would not abide by any fools and you couldn't put one over him.
"He knew that plant better than any person on that site and by the end of his career he was fiercely loyal to those people at Liddell because he saw what they could achieve."
Mr Marcheff retired in 2005 after more than 40 years at Liddell and 21 as the manager - championing research to integrate solar heating into the coal power generation cycle among many other achievements.
Working on such a massive site brought with it exposure to hundreds of different personalities, and it's where Ms Moriarty learned who she wanted to be like and who she didn't.
She soaked up the experience and how others operated, when the first computers came in she learned the ropes of the financial system and took an interest in how one component of the site could impact the rest.
"I saw that what happened on the plant flowed through to the dollars, if the plant tripped, outages cost you," she said.
"I think Liddell was my learning ground to see all these interconnections between HR, operations and engineering and it led me to do my degree in accounting."
Ms Moriarty said Liddell supported her to not only gain her education but to grow her family, juggling work and raising her children.
"I guess that's why dad was there for 45 years," she said.
Eventually she started to pursue promotions and financial roles, climbing her way up the ranks to chief financial officer of Macquarie Generation where she led a team of about 60 employees across three sites.
As Liddell prepares to power down this week, it's a sad loss for what she remembers as not just a 'big family' but a big part of her family.
"It's emotional, I wish dad was here to see it, I think that's the one thing I regret is that he isn't here to see this," she said.
"He was a legend in the Electricity Commission, a champion of Liddell - really he was Mr Liddell.
"In his book he said by his own omission that by the end of his time there people knew more about it than him because of upgrades and new technologies.
"What I would like to acknowledge is that he's a part of that, he championed a lot of those upgrades and better standards and I think he would be proud to say, 'a job well done old girl'."