Beef Australia has today announced The Graeme Acton Beef Connections Mentor Partners for 2021. Proudly supported by Westpac, the program was launched at Beef Australia in 2015 and this year attracted a record number of applicants from throughout Australia. The number of women who applied and have been successful celebrates the growth of the industry.
Beef Australia Chair Bryce Camm founded the program in 2015 and said “The strength of the Australian beef industry comes from its people – The Graeme Acton Beef Connections program has produced impressive leaders who are already making positive impacts on our industry. I am looking forward to meeting the 2021 Mentor Partners and following their journey.”
The ten Mentor Partners were selected by a panel from an impressive field of young beef industry professionals. The diverse applicants represented agribusiness, live export, research & development, producers, processing, natural resource management, feed companies, breed societies, lot feeding, government and students.
Beef Australia CEO Ian Mill said “The unique combination of providing these learning opportunities, with personal and professional development while establishing industry networks, is what makes this program successful. There are some inspiring alumni and I know we will see many more industry leaders rise from the 2021 program.”
Mentor Partners will be paired with industry Mentors to undertake a 14 month project which will benefit the Australian beef industry. Barbara Bishop coordinates the program and said “I now move to the critical task of ensuring each Mentor Partner is matched with the best possible Mentor. It is important to not only align for the development of personal and professional skills, we want to see industry networks developed to ensure longterm success.”
Westpac Agribusiness Regional General Manager for Queensland, Peta Ward, said the beauty of the Beef Connections Program is that it acknowledges the fundamental role beef producers and young people from all sectors of the beef industry continue to play in keeping our economy and rural industries alive.
“Westpac is a keen supporter of the Graeme Acton Beef Connections Program because it provides a positive environment for young people in the beef industry to share vital knowledge which will help them to further develop their professional and personal skills,” said Mrs. Ward.
“It’s reassuring to see this Program lets younger farmers and others working within the beef industry to have an opportunity to leverage their talents, and appetite for learning, as this will be of great benefit to their business and the Australian beef industry too.”
“The sector continues to adapt to challenges but if it wasn’t for the passion and specialist knowledge shared within the industry, we wouldn’t be able to continue producing the best beef in the world,” Mrs. Ward added.
Caitlyn Barton and Caitlin Obst (pictured) both of Mort & Co and have been selected as 2021 Mentor Partners.
“We are both thrilled and honoured to be selected as part of the Graeme Acton Beef Connections Program. It is a privilege to be given the opportunity to further develop ourselves and give back to the industry that has provided us so much. We look forward to developing our projects and working with our mentors to steer us towards achieving great things and promoting the beef industry as the only industry for us.”
Caitlyn Barton – Feedlot
Rebecca Clapperton – Producer
Hugh Courts – Agribusiness
Georgia Glasson – Producer
Chloe Gould – Processor
Kari Moffat – Live export
Caitlin Obst – Feedlot
Ryan Olive – Producer
Kate Power – Processor
Ellen Simpson – Agribusiness