Our Board

GippsDairy is governed by a board with 10 director positions. An independent Selection Panel recommends appointments to the Board. Recommendations are based on skills, experience, and an ability to commit to the role. The Board is made up of six dairy farmers and four people with other skills needed by the Board.

Board members are appointed for a two-year term. Terms on the board are unlimited with most Directors completing between 2 and 3 terms.

Directors

 

 

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 Grant Williams (Chair)

Grant and Leesa purchased their dairy farm at Hallora in 1996 after share farming for eight years at Yannathan.

Grant has been an active member of many local community and sporting groups. He also has been a member of many discussion and focus farm groups. GippsDairy welcomed Grant to their Board of Directors in October 2012.

 

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Sinead De Gooyer (Public Officer)

Sinead de Gooyer and her husband Evan have been share farming in South Gippsland since 2009. Sinead also works part-time as a GP in Leongatha and has spent time as a director of the Board of the General Practice Alliance South Gippsland.

Having joined the Board at the GippsDairy AGM in October 2013, Sinead is honoured to have an opportunity to contribute from her unique perspective within the industr

Her experience of raising a family, operating a modern dairy, and 10 years working as a GP in rural dairying communities have provided her with an insight into many of the influences impacting on the sustainability of our industry.

 

Ross Anderson

Ross Anderson has spent the last 10 years on the family farm in Denison after a decade working as a carpenter both interstate and overseas.  His time away from the industry has given him an appreciation of dairy farming and he has embraced the lifestyle since coming home.

Ross has gained recent experience participating in Victorian Government agriculture programs and the Murray Goulburn Supplier Consultative Committee.

Ross currently share farms/farm manages with his parents Graeme and Chris and is responsible for day-to-day operations on the farm.Ross’ knowledge of irrigation farming will add to GippsDairy’s decision making abilities regarding the Macalister Irrigation District.

 

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Joanne Bills

Joanne Bills joined the GippsDairy board in October 2013. Joanne is an experienced agribusiness executive, and has worked in the dairy industry for 17 years. She holds a Bachelor of Agricultural Science (Hons) and a Post Graduate Diploma in Economics, both from the University of Melbourne.

Her professional life has included roles with Dairy Australia, National Australia Bank and the Australian Bureau of Agriculture and Resource Economics (now ABARES). Joanne brings to GippsDairy extensive knowledge of the Australian and global dairy industries, experience in strategic planning and analysis of food supply chains as well as an extensive network across dairy and other food sectors. Joanne is a Director of specialist consultancy Fresh Agenda with her husband Steve, and works across the dairy industry and other food sectors.

 

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Lauren Finger (Deputy Chair)

Yannathan dairy farmer, Lauren Finger, sees the GippsDairy Board as a first step in developing a leadership role in the dairy industry. Lauren's experience includes working as a vet in private practice, and working with the Department of Primary Industries. As well as being a mother to 3 young children, with husband Simon, she runs a growing dairy farm business. Lauren and Simon milk 400 cows on a 340 acre farm that was once the home of inaugural GippsDairy chair, the late Don Campbell who was a passionate advocate of encouraging young dairy farmers 

Around the board table, Lauren said she would push for initiatives that promote farm profitability, seeing it as a great opportunity to learn more about the industry, about how the board operates and how the industry operates – where dairy levy money goes and how it is spent

 

Brian Gannon

Brian Gannon joins the GippsDairy Board as a Specialist Director, bringing his skills as an agribusiness manager for NAB in Leongatha.

With a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture and having grown up on a dairy farm, Brian is well placed to provide a balanced viewpoint on financial matters.

Brian has been exposed to dairy extension practices through his involvement in discussion groups and has participated in Focus Farms at both Loch and Leongatha South.  He was selected in 2012 for the Marcus Oldham rural leadership program, which offered insights into the difference that can be made by the actions of one person in a community.

 

Brad Missen

Brad Missen comes to the GippsDairy board with a wealth of industry experience under his belt.

The Denison dairy farmer was part of the team that started YDDP (YDNA), as well as being on the steering committee for the first few years. He has also been a long-term member of the Denison Discussion Group.

Brad has been in support groups for a number of Focus Farms, including the current one at the Macalister Demonstration Farm.

A keen interest in the development of the Macalister Irrigation District has seen Brad involved in Southern Rural Water’s Macalister Customer Consultative Committee, which he current deputy chairs.

Brad manages the family farm he grew up on.

 

Dan Armstrong

Jindivick farm business management consultant Dan Armstrong helps the board provide opportunities to further develop farm systems management which is particularly crucial in the current economic climate.

With his broad experience in the research development and extension area, Dan is also able to provide the expertise to develop programs aimed at building wealth within the industry.

Running his own consulting business specialising in farm business management, Dan has provided analytics for individual farmers and at an industry level, which the board believes will help contribute to the development of GippsDairy programs

 

Richard Shephard

Maffra’s Richard Shephard has combined a veterinary career with his involvement with research and extension programs as well as farm consulting.

This combination will bring a unique insight to GippsDairy and will help broaden the knowledge base available to the board.

Dr Shephard, who has worked as a clinical vet, farm management consultant and, most recently, an industry level consultant, has skills and abilities that can help broaden the boardroom discussion when looking at issues and problems.