Australian Grain Leaders Program

The Australian Grain Leaders Program (AGLP) is a national leadership program designed specifically for emerging leaders in the grains industry. The program develops leadership skills, knowledge and potential.

The AGLP is designed to give individuals that helping hand necessary to develop, implement and evaluate their own project. The AGLP provides the ongoing support of a trained program facilitator.

Open to people under 40 years of age working in the whole of the supply chain in the Australian grains industry, the AGLP offers participants the opportunity to:

  • meet other like- minded growers;
  • develop leadership knowledge and skills;
  • gain an insight into the leadership pathways of established leaders and learn from inspiring speakers;
  • develop a mentoring partnership with an industry leader, and
  • implement a plan to achieve an Australian grain industry, enterprise or individual farm project that provides an overall benefit to the industry.

For the past 10 years, GrainGrowers has provided a 12-month Australian Grain Leaders Program for young aspiring grain leaders, consisting of face to face meetings and multiple individualised one on one phone sessions. The AGLP has been based on an integrated model of leadership knowledge, skills development, enterprise and industry engagement, and application. Throughout the program the facilitator has mentored participants through their leadership journey where they have selected and worked throughout the year on their individual projects relating to issues in the grains industry or their own businesses.

Applications for the 2020 Australian Grain Leaders Program with open in July 2019. The program runs every two years.

GrainGrowers is proud to be providing opportunities for grains industry participants to embrace the challenge of leading and driving change in the Australian grains industry.

Australian Grain Leaders Program Participants

Symon Allen

Kimba, SA

A fourth generation grain farmer running a 4050 ha operation at Kimba, SA, Symon has worked successfully to expand the business while reducing debt. He is keen to see the grains sector generally become more focused on profit margins, examining, for example, the opportunities for alternative markets and transport options.

Nick Davis

Adelaide, SA

Nick works for grain accumulator, Davis Grain Pty Ltd on behalf of AWB. Davis Grain also accumulates grain for three GrainFlow sites within the Mid North and Yorke Peninsula of South Australia. Nick is relatively new to the grains industry but since joining has really enjoyed his role and is keen to become more involved within industry and learn more. After spending time in the United States examining the grains industry there, Nick believes Australian growers can become better at managing risk when selling grain, through offering different marketing products.

Amery Drage

Northampton, WA

Amery has been a grain farmer for more than five years on the family farm at Northampton WA. He seeks to broaden his knowledge of the grains industry and use that knowledge to improve the farm’s efficiency and productivity while making a difference to the industry as a whole. He has experimented with super absorbent polymers on farm for greater yield and water use efficiency.

Kathryn Fleay

Mingenew, WA

Kathryn is Executive Officer for the Mingenew Irwin Group, having previously managed a broadacre cropping property in Morawa. She is also involved in the family’s mixed cropping and sheep farm in the south of WA, providing agronomic advice when required. She seeks to continue farming in the future, either as a grain grower or in other ways that allow involvement in farming enterprises. She is keen to focus on ways to see the industry have a sustainable future.

Mitch Mouritz

Hyden, WA

Mitch has been a grain farmer for 13 years and is involved in operating a 8500 ha mixed farming family enterprise involving cropping, livestock and an earthmoving business on farms in Hyden and the Lake King district of Western Australia. Mitch is interested in the move to large scale expansion and how this can best be managed whilst dealing with the problems of climate variability and the day to day business.

Nick Panizza

Williams, WA

Nick is a member of a family farming operation in Williams WA, farming 5000 ha with 80 per cent continuous cropping and the remaining pastures for livestock. Through the use of online farm decision making software, Nick has been able to assess not just the most profitable crop in any given year but the most profitable rotation. He is keen to see the use of data and related technology drive forward the grains industry to greater profitability and efficiency.

Tess Walch

Streaky Bay, SA

Tess is the Eyre Peninsula Representative for FREE Eyre Limited, based in Streaky Bay and specialises in grain marketing strategy and broking. Tess is keen to develop her leadership abilities through the course to benefit the 475 Eyre Peninsula farmers who are sponsoring her participation. Tess is focused on developing and executing a grower engagement strategy for FREE Eyre shareholders, and hopes to return some grassroots value to members.

Katrina Dicks

Sydney, NSW

Katrina is a Grower Relationship Officer at GrainGrowers in Sydney. She is undertaking the course to understand grain farmers better and the production issues experienced by farmers “at the coal face”. GrainGrowers is proud to sponsor Katrina to assist her to build her communication, engagement and leadership skills.

Veronica Terry

Dairy Plains, TAS

Veronica has worked in financial planning for more than 10 years. She and her husband Rob run the family farm at Dairy Plains in northern Tasmania. The Terrys have structured their business to service the feed needs of the local dairy industry prominent in the area and grow wheat, barley, linseed, sunflower seed, hybrid canola seed and potatoes. Veronica is investigating why agricultural investments are not easily accessible by everyday Australian investors. Veronica is also keen to look at how to utilise parts of the farm that are not conducive to grain production, either to promote biodiversity and native plants or a commercially viable crop.

Millie Bach

Jandowae, QLD

Formerly a Domestic Grain Merchant with AGT Foods Australia, Millie is now working on the family farm at Jandowae where the business has been trialling canola. Millie is interested in exploring ways to ensure younger generations are given the opportunity to remain either on farm or within the industry, and how connectivity can improve traceability within the value chain to ensure Australia captures and retains overseas markets.

Henry Moxham

Coonamble, NSW

Henry is a farm manager in the family business in central west New South Wales. He is focused on how grain farmers can adapt with enhanced flexibility and resilience to a more variable climate in the next decade.

Graduates Archive (2008-2017)

New South Wales

YearNameCityStateP/CProject Focus
2017Robert AllenTemoraNSW2666Investigate sub soil amelioration of sodic and alkaline soils.
2017Oscar PearseMoreeNSW2400Benchtop analysis for landscape planning in cropping lands.
2017Bec WildeSydneyNSW2000Increase efficiency in task management systems and create channels for advocacy of capability building initiatives in the grain growing industry.
2015Angus DuddyQuirindiNSW2343Economic viability of the production of high yielding soft biscuit wheats under lateral irrigation systems.
2015Daniel SheridanPurlewaughNSW2657Understanding how we can better the industry, more profitable and productive.
2015Jan StillardBaroogaNSW3644Reduce the impact of fatigue on grain farmers during peak periods.
2014Emma ThomasForbesNSW2871Investigate the carbon footprint of our systems.
2014Brent MortonWest WyalongNSW2671Looking at what steps other farmers have taken to get to where they are now.
2014Andrew FreethGilgandraNSW2827Optimising on Farm Storage.
2014Sam WeirBarmedmanNSW2668Cost effective machinery.
2013Neil MickanLake CargelligoNSW2672Adopt best management practices.
2013Evan WilsonForbesNSWGrowing and developing new varieties.
2011/2012Kurt WilkinsonDubboNSW2830Logistical constraints of grains grown in NSW from paddock to port.
2010/2011Sam HeagneyWagga WaggaNSW2650Australian Grains Market Index – Develop and pilot an Australian Grains Market Index.
2010/2011Andrew BowmanDunedooNSW2844BEST Trials 2011 – Identify, coordinate and evaluation 2+ BEST Trials reducing the amount of inputs that are required to maintain and increase grain production levels.
2010/2011Virginia BourkeNarromineNSW2831dbc Vision Plus – Recreate the dbc SMARTsoft marketing strategy to increase relevance in Australia and enhance service delivery to customers.
2010/2011Glen SmithWagga WaggaNSW2650Ready for Management – Develop and pilot a product to support young farmers making the transition from worker to manager in their business.
2010/2011Richard RiceParkesNSW2870Communication PLUS – Develop and implement a communication plan to increase information sharing and effectiveness with staff and grain growers.
2010/2011Robert GillDarlington PointNSW2706Perennial Grains Plus – Develop a Perennial Grains Adoption Plan for implementation with Australian growers based on domestic research and overseas experience.
2010/2011Amy FayLynehamACT2602Grains Research Priorities – Document research prioritisation model and make recommendations for improving ways to prioritise research funds in the Australian grain industry
2009/2010Garth WicksonCoolamonNSW2701Develop a Partnership Model and trial with an industry leadership group to undertake a pilot research project.
2009/2010John FrancisWagga WaggaNSW2650Successful Farm Leasing Program Deliver workshops to demonstrate the factors that lead to success in farm leasing for both landlords and tenants.
2009/2010Melissa HenryRichmondNSW2753Find Grains Training On-Line  Develop a communication strategy for the Online Agricultural Training Services (OATS) tool.
2009/2010Samuel HermenaRamsgateNSW2217Expand Global Market Promote an innovative import/export model for pulses and fertiliser.
2009/2010David JeffriesArtarmonNSW2064Australian Quality Grain Develop a nationally consistent definition of Australian quality assured grain.
2009/2010Chris BlanchardWagga WaggaNSW2678Educating Grain Scientists Implement a grain science education program for new industry entrants.
2009/2010Peter HortonNarromineNSW2821Develop a strategy to support effective decision making for Gilgandra Cooperative.
2008/2009Georgina WhitingMoreeNSW2400GROWER ENGAGEMENT Develop an innovative model to increase grower engagement and enhance the interface between traders and growers.
2008/2009James HamiltonNarrominensw2821AGLINK Develop a business plan for farm investment brokerage service.
2008/2009Daniel CooperPullabookaNSW2810ASIA BOUND Investigate bag and container trade opportunities into Asia.
2008/2009Katrina SwiftParkesNSW2870GRAINS-TALK Investigate a national initiative which encourages younger growers / professionals to become more involved in the Australian grains industry.
2008/2009Mark SwiftParkesNSW2870Influencing people – Develop leadership influence through active participation in grains industry forums, committees and groups whilst encouraging new entrants to be more proactive.
2008/2009James NalderCoonambleNSW2829Lead the implementation of the Coonamble Farming Co-operative to realise benefits for all stakeholders.


YearNameCityStateP/CProject Focus
2017Jordan AndersonTheodoreQLD4719Campaign for greater awareness of issues and practical solutions around oversize agricultural machinerary movements in QLD, and also at a national level.
2016Luke BradleySpringsureQLD4722Luke is keen to set up trials in sodic and calcareous soils with nutrient constraints to investigate the production of crops adding different fertilisers and assessing the conversion of these soils into profitable arable farmland.
2013Samantha NoonSuratQLD4417improving staff productivity through education.
2011/2012 Jay HollandHighfieldsQLD4352Develop efficient procedures to help with the challenges faced with end point royalty harvest declaration.
2011/2012Brendan TaylorQLDExplore ways of getting the agricultural sector integrated with social media for a global audience.
2010/2011Christoper D CooreChapel HillQLD4069People, Growth + Grain 2030 – Investigate the impacts, draw insights and set projections to inform the future Australian grain industry.
2009/2010Bill HoareJandaryanQLD4403Establish an enterprise leadership plan (integrated family and business) to remotely oversee an effective and productive team.
2009/2010 Chris WarrickToowoombaQLD4350Grain Storage Research Link Create a positive communication link between researchers and farmers regarding grain storage.
2008/2009Mel TaylorToowoombaQLD4350GRAIN TRACE Develop an industry wide traceability tool for improving the quality and sale ability of Australian grain.
2008/2009Arthur GearonChinchillaQLD4413Investigate leadership groups and roles in the Australian grains industry and establish a pathway for involvement and / or active participation.

South Australia

YearNameCityStateP/CProject Focus
2016Simon MartinKaroondaSA5307Evaluate the profitability and sustainability of a stand-alone cropping system in a traditionally low rainfall merino sheep / grain business through the introduction of legumes.
2016Tim PaschkeWaikerieSA5330Raise awareness for social and mental wellbeing in farming and rural communities.
2013Andrew HallManooraSA5414Leasing for releasing.
2011/2012Chris LawsonUrrbraeSA5064Explore how best to communicate the issue of carbon emissions, carbon pricing and carbon legislation to the ag sector, particularly primary producers.
2011/2012Jennifer SchofieldBalaklavaSA5461Development of a competitive, effective and efficient supply chain with improved information flows.
2010/2011Lousie FlohrTailem BendSA5260Sustain Grain Certified – Investigate international sustainability accreditation systems and their implementation within the Australian grain industry.
2010/2011Henry CarracherClareSA5453Growers Engagement – Design and deliver a grower engagement program for grain accumulators.
2009/2010Tom SmibertAdelaideSA5081Grain Trader Pathways Investigate and establish grain trader pathways and opportunities.
2009/2010James CaracoussisAdelaideSA5001INDUSTRY PARTNERSHIP KIT Develop an Introduction to Grains Industry Kit for agribusiness personnel.
2009/2010Richard PrusaStrathalbynSA5255Facilitate the increase of pulse production in southern and western Australia by promoting the efficient growing and marketing of pulses.
2008/2009James EdwardsRoseworthySA5371Lead a campaign to establish and increase production in south west WA and SA for the ethanol industry.
2008/2009Tom SaintMaitlandSA5573Develop a sponsorship strategy.
2008/2009Josh TaylorVale ParkSA5081Establish national supply chain efficiencies within the deregulated grains industry.


YearNameCityStateP/CProject Focus
2017Rob TerryDairy PlainsTAS7304Drive further efficiencies in wheat production and network with leading growers to develop best practice. Rob instigated the development of the Australian Wheat Record.
2016Michael NicholsSisters CreekTAS7325Micahel wants to drive the growth of cereals production on the north west coast of the state.

Western Australia

YearNameCityStateP/CProject Focus
2017Jasmyn AllenYunaWA6532Advocate the adoption of steamlined on-farm human resources management programs.
2017Callum WesleySouthern CrossWA6426Succession planning.
2017Matt RigbyKonjonupWA6395Pasture manipulation & grazing/spraying pressure techniques.
2016Boyd CarterWubinWA6612Boyd is interested in understanding better how farmers make decisions about their businesses.
2016Lewis JohnstoneWilliamsWA6391Investigate alternative methods of expanding family farm businesses covering options for both investment and management.
2015Ty FulwoodNorthamWA6401Transitioning from a family business into a larger organisation.
2014Ryan JoyceHydenWA6359Attracting young people into agriculture.
2014Guydon BoyleYorkWA6302Develop the framework for a decisions making tool.
2013Claire ShadboltMukinbudinWA6479Sustainability on our farming communities. What can be implemented to ensure we are farming for the future?
2013Danielle WhitfieldBurswoodWA6100How to increase the effectiveness of grower representation groups.
2013Shaun WittwerCuballingWA6311Farm grain storage combined with selling direct to the customer and value adding.
2011/2012Verity ToddAlfred CoveWA6154Address how the grains industry represents itself – to those beyond.
2011/2012Susan HallCrawleyWA6009Analysis of capacity building and use of networks to increase human capital in the grains industry.
2011/2012Pete ReesWelshpoolWA6401Investigate the role of different stakeholders, QA and environmental stewardship for Australian compliance with the EU’s renewable energy directive.
2011/2012Anna WatsonFremantleWA6959Technological developments, creating efficiency and generating value.
2010/2011Heidi RodgersNorth FreemantleWA6159My Offers – Investigate and pilot an Online Offering System for WA growers.
2010/2011Justin BaylesYangebupWA6164Safety First – Establish and implement a Safety Transformation Plan for port facility.
2010/2011Natalie MaguireWest PerthWA6005Engaging Communication + Influencing Results – Develop and implement a range of communication strategies and tools that will result in positive management influence and change.
2009/2010Kelly PiperBeverleyWA6304Rural Youth Conference WA To establish a grains industry conference in Western Australia for rural youth.
2009/2010Sheila NairCanning ValeWA6155Develop and trial workplace mentoring program in the CBH shipping and chartering department resulting in increased workplace participation and productivity.
2008/2009Royce TaylorLake GraceWA6353Work with existing state grain leaders to identify and implement strategies to encourage involvement of the next generation.
2008/2009Lauren WestLake GraceWA6353Facilitate the establishment of a regional grower group to lead key research into new technologies, improve sustainable agricultural practices, deal with climate change and facilitate extension projects.


YearNameCityStateP/CProject Focus
2017Darcy GormanMelbourneVIC3004Careers based away from the family farm – we can still be involved in the operations and strategic direction of the farm.
2016Cameron ParkerBoortVIC3537Cam is keen to investigate different pathways for young passionate employees to enter the grains industry in their own right.
2016Jim WakefieldWalpeupVIC3507He is going to investigate and trial different communication methods and strategies for use in the collaborative partnership and integrate these into the day to day running of the business.
2016Tom HewittAreegraVIC3480Tom is keen to investigate the real cost of production and drivers of profitability in order to benchmark his business and make evidence based decisions.
2015Dale HageNurcoungVIC3401Water use efficiency and increasing the water holding capacity of out soils.
2015Tracy DartWarracknabealVIC3393Financially focused, developing, managing, succession planning and reporting systems.
2014Daniel KeamWallupVIC3401Investigation chemical and fertilizer residues and how they survive in our current level of inputs.
2013Tom DunstanTelangatuk EastVIC3401What makes wheat tick?
2013Jonathan DyerKaniraVIC3419Soil moisture probes installation.
2013Brad McQueenNyrrabyVIC3585Feasibility of implementing an irrigation venture.
2011/2012Tristan ShannonMelbourneVIC3004Investigate, plan and develop an app that allows farmers to see real time data
 2011/2012 Brett Hosking Quambatook VIC 3540 Investigate peak body representation in the grains industry.
 2010/2011 Kate Lang Coldstream VIC 3770EPR Certification – Establish an EPR Certification program to promote the benefits of an End Point Royalty System within the Australian grain industry
 2009/2010 Tim Dean Geelong VIC 3220Fuel Hedging  Investigate the development of a fuel hedging policy
2008/2009Alistair Murdoch Swan HillVIC3585CAREERS IN AG Investigate ways of profiling and promoting the grains industry as an exciting career choice for school and university students
2008/2009Helen RichardsonLower NortonVIC3401PULSE-NET Develop a communication strategy for researchers in the Australian pulse industry to share findings, results and outcomes for the benefit of industry.

Get in Touch

For more information, please email or call us.