Sheep Producers Australia selects young farmers for leadership program

Sheep Central, December 12, 2017

SHEEP Producers Australia has selected 14 young producers from six states for the industry’s 2018 leadership program.

The successful applicants in the Sheep Industry Leadership Program have come from throughout the sheep meat value chain.

They represent producers, agribusiness, researchers, marketing and communications and industry consultants – from all the sheep-producing states.

SPA is focused on building industry leadership capability by upskilling industry groups and leaders throughout the supply chain. SPA operates a range of programs and ensures participants remain engaged in the organisation’s activities through the Future Flock Network.

The successful participants in the 2018 leadership program  include:

  • John Murdoch, NSW
  • Jock Munro, NSW
  • Peter Thornton, NSW
  • Allison Mudford, NSW
  • Steph Fowler, NSW
  • Johnny Gardner, Vic
  • Craig Hinchliffe, Vic
  • Catriona Nicholls, Tas
  • George Nichols, Tas
  • Louisa Street, Tas
  • Karen Smith, WA
  • Susanne Levett, WA
  • Sam Anderson, Qld
  • Graham Clothier, SA

Sheep Producers Australia president Allan Piggott said it was only the second year the professional development program had been run, as part of the SPA and Meat & Livestock Australia joint initiative, Building Leadership Capability for the Sheep Industry.

“The initiative is designed to ensure the Australian sheep industry attracts, develops and retains people with the right leadership skills to contribute to the long-term viability of the industry.

“As part of a review undertaken by SPA two years ago, during its development of the Sheep Industry Strategic Plan 2020, it was determined that there were 150 leadership positions within the industry which were being filled by only about 50-60 people,” Mr Piggott said.

“So we know there is a real need to be investing in the current and future leaders of our industry to ensure the sheep industry has a strong, united voice to government and service providers.”

The program is run by the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation and occurs over three sessions – two face-to-face and one online.

The first face-to-face session is in Queensland in February 2018, where participants will embark on an outdoors experiential learning experience and classroom activities understanding their role in the industry.

Session two will be held in March and April where participants will be guided through online programs and the final session is set for May and will coincide with a range of SPA board and other leadership activities.

Each of the 15 positions in the program is valued at more than $10,000 which covers all training, course materials and travel to the two face-to-face sessions.

To find out more about SPA’s investment in leadership programs, visit

Source: Sheep Producers Australia.



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