New directors to lead us into the AgriFutures

5 October 2020

Minister for Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management, David Littleproud, has appointed the next AgriFutures Australia non-executive directors for a three-year term commencing on 1 October 2020.

Minister Littleproud said the new directors, who commenced their role on the 1st October, would play a critical role in Agrifutures’ functions and operations.

“Accelerating productivity growth and sustainability through research and development is essential if we want to see Australian agriculture continue to grow and reach industry’s ambitious goal of $100 billion by 2030,” Minister Littleproud said.

“The Australian Government invests around $1.1 billion a year in innovation and research & development (R&D) for the agricultural sector. 

“The appointment of the next non-executive directors will be paramount to realising the priorities highlighted in the AgriFutures Australia Strategic R&D Plan 2017–2022.

“AgriFutures Australia plays an important leadership role in planning, investing in and managing R&D to address important emerging issues for Australian Agriculture and leads the Emerging National Rural Issues Forum.

“More recently AgriFutures has taken the lead in developing the growAG platform to showcase research outcomes and commercialisation opportunities across all RDCs on the one platform. 

“The new directors will also assist Australia’s agricultural industries to seize opportunities in our agricultural innovation system as the sector faces unprecedented change and emerging risks.

“I congratulate the new directors and look forward to working together to benefit our rural and regional communities.

“I also want to take this opportunity to thank outgoing directors for the leadership, skills and expertise they brought to Agrifutures’ operation during their appointments.”

“I am very pleased to note that the new board will continue to reflect the Government’s commitment to ensuring gender balance on government boards—with three women and three men being appointed. 

Chairperson, Ms Kay Hull AM, was appointed in August 2016 and reappointed for three years in August 2019.

Managing Director, Mr John Harvey, has been with AgriFutures Australia since May 2016.

Fast facts

  • The Australian Government invests around $1.1 billion a year in rural research and development (R&D) through the rural Research and Development Corporations (RDCs), Cooperative Research Centres, the CSIRO, universities, the R&D Tax Incentive and other programs.
  • Among the six persons appointed, there is one reappointment and five new appointees.
  • Newly appointed AgriFutures Australia board members:
    • Dr William Ryan – Director, Guilbridge Pty Ltd (consultancy); Western Australia (reappointment)
    • Ms Cindy Cassidy – CEO, Farmlink Research Limited; New South Wales (new appointment)
    • Ms Diana Gibbs – Principal, Diana Gibbs and Partners (consultancy practice); New South Wales (new appointment)
    • Mr Andrew Harris – Director, Technical Futures and Innovation, Laing O’Rourke, New South Wales (new appointment)
    • Mr Daniel Le Feuvre – Managing Director, Australian Bee Services; South Australia (new appointment).
    • Ms Emma Robinson – Primary Producer; Queensland (new appointment).
  • Outgoing directors: 
    • Dr Tony Hamilton – 11 October 2014 to 30 September 2020
    • Dr Kate Andrews – 1 October 2017 to 30 September 2020
    • Mr Ian Henderson – 1 October 2017 to 30 September 2020
    • Mr Ric Clark – 1 October 2017 to 30 September 2020