THE National Farmers Federation has appointed Tony Mahar as the organisation’s incoming chief executive officer, effective 14 March.
He will take over from Simon Talbot who has served as CEO, and spearheaded a number of transformational initiatives within the organisation over the past 18 months.
NFF president Brent Finlay said Mr Mahar had an outstanding track record across economics, trade and broader agricultural policy. He had been a key member of the NFF’s leadership team since mid-2012 as deputy CEO.
“Tony has been one of the key drivers in setting a new clear and progressive strategic direction for the organisation and how it will best represent the Australian agriculture industry,” Mr Finlay said.
“He has some of the nation’s best skills across agriculture and economics and, due to his knowledge and experience, is undoubtedly the best person to lead the NFF and drive the implementation of the organisation’s future strategy in what is an exciting growth stage for both our organisation and the broader industry.”
Mr Finlay paid tribute to outgoing CEO Simon Talbot, who has taken up an opportunity in the corporate sector, and applauded the leadership he has shown in what has been a significant period of transformation for Australia’s peak body for agriculture.
“Simon will now focus on finalising a series of commercial arrangements for a number of weeks to ensure a clear handover to the new executive at NFF. He is a strong supporter of digital agriculture and recognises the critical role it will play in the future growth of our industry,” Mr Finlay said.
In another key announcement, current CEO of the NSW Farmers Association, Matt Brand, has been seconded on a part-time basis to the position of NFF’s executive director of integration and digital.
Mr Brand will steer the next stage of the NFF’s Project Streamline and Strengthen (PSS) which has been developed to strengthen agricultural representation, remove duplicated structures and to streamline resources to ensure a stronger, more effective voice for farmers across Australia. It has been overwhelmingly endorsed by the NFF’s member organisations and will also include the NFF’s innovative new Digital Platform.
“Matt’s experience in agricultural advocacy, as well as previous marketing and commercial roles, makes him ideally qualified to cement the new digital platform, an initiative that has the potential to draw primary producers from across Australia together like never before,” Mr Finlay said.
“The platform will form the centrepiece of our new unified approach to national farmer representation and will also offer valuable commercial incentives to our grass-roots farmer members.”