Agribusiness leader nominations sought

Rabobank seeks agribusiness leadership talent for recognition

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Rabobank's emerging leader winner for 2018, the Australian Agricultural Company's Anna Speer, with Rabo's Australian and New Zealand managing director, Peter Knoblanche.

Rabobank's emerging leader winner for 2018, the Australian Agricultural Company's Anna Speer, with Rabo's Australian and New Zealand managing director, Peter Knoblanche.

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This year's trans-Tasman leadership awards for agribusiness leader and emerging leader will be announced at a dinner in New Zealand.

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Rabobank is to make New Zealand the setting for this year's big agribusiness leadership awards in November.

Launching the 2019 awards nominations call, Rabobank Australia and NZ managing director, Peter Knoblanche, said the trans-Tasman gongs for agribusiness leader and emerging leader would be announced at a leadership dinner in Auckland on November 28.

It's the first time the presentation ceremony has been organised in NZ.

Some of the biggest names in agribusiness in Australia and NZ have previously been recognised for their leading contributions to the sector at events normally held in Melbourne or Sydney.

Rabobank has a 20-year involvement in the event, which attracts the who's who of agribusiness to meet and celebrate the peer-nominated winners, judged by former recipients.

The contribution past leaders have made to their own industries, the agricultural sector in general, and their communities is nothing short of inspirational - Peter Knoblanche, Rabobank

Last year accolades went Nuffield International chief executive officer, Jim Geltch and Australian Agricultural Company chief operating officer, Anna Speer.

Both were acknowledged for their outstanding achievement in - and contribution to - the food, beverage and agribusiness industries.

Other previous Rabobank Leadership Award recipients have included prominent Australian company and industry organisation heads David Crombie, Mick Keogh, Barry Irvin and Nick Burton-Taylor, and NZ's Sir Graeme Harrison, Sir George Fistonich, Sir Henry van der Heyden, plus Australian food and agricultural scientists, Dr Bruce Lee and Dr Jim Peacock.

Emerging Leader Awards have gone to organic producer, Nathan Free; fresh leaf herb producer, Jan Vydra; viticulturist, Zachary Caudo; beef producer, Bryce Camm, and industry executive Georgie Aley.

Two new finalists will join the winners' ranks at the end of this year.

As the awards were peer-nominated, Mr Knoblanche has urged industry participants to put forward names of those who were making positive contributions to the future growth and prosperity of the sector.

Nominations close on August 9.

He said past winners on both sides of the Tasman had been drawn from a wide cross section of farm sector backgrounds, such as wine, dairy, beef, grain and horticulture, and had included scientists, economists, educators and researchers.

"The contribution these leaders have made to their own industries, the agricultural sector in general, and their communities is nothing short of inspirational," he said.

Their leadership, courage, passion and foresight has seen them carve a path, as they often take the road not travelled to get to where they are today.

"This was epitomised by last year's winners, with Jim Geltch recognised for developing and engaging young people in agriculture via the Nuffield agricultural scholarships.

"Anna Speer has, in her relatively short tenure in the industry, carved a successful career in the livestock sector as an advocate for innovation and change."

Mr Knoblanche said there were many unsung heroes in the agricultural sector.

"These awards not only bring their business successes to the forefront, but all the initiatives they are involved in at a community and industry level."

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