Speaker Profiles

Allan Cooney

Allan Cooney was born in Cunnamulla, Queensland. into a pastoral family and spent many years in the family business before going into an executive career in management.

Currently CEO at NAPCo an appointment Allan has held for 3 years. Allan has been a CEO 8 times and served on 12 boards. He has worked variously as a jackeroo, barman, roustabout, labourer, ringer, salesman, pro footballer, station manager, pastoralist, classer, studmaster, activist, pilot, consultant, business executive, trainer, mentor, share trader & CEO.

Allan has worked in places like China, Antarctica and South America, and across most of Australia. He helped develop a new economic engine for regional development ion the NT, lead an Antarctic expedition, and is passionate advocate for sound stewardship of the land, our natural resources and the place the livestock industry fills in long term sustainability.

Jane Weatherley

Jane is currently the General Manager Communications and Adoption with Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA). Previously, for 7 years she was the Chief Executive Officer of Integrity Systems Company which is a wholly owned subsidiary of MLA.

ISC is responsible for all traceability, biosecurity and the initiation of the industry data platform across the MLA group.

Before ISC, Jane was the General Manager – Livestock Productivity, managing Meat Standards Australia, livestock genetics and sheep productivity RD&E. She is extremely passionate about delivering positive impact from all RD&E investment for Australian red meat and livestock producers and maintains an active role in her family farming operations in the Central Tablelands of NSW and on Bruny Island, Tasmania.

Julia Waite

Julia has a background in agricultural science, ag tech and startup investment. In her role as CN30 Project Manager with Meat & Livestock Australia, she is responsible for identifying high impact R&D opportunities that deliver progress towards the red meat sector’s net zero target by 2030. Prior to joining MLA, Julia was Head of Operations at SproutX, a national accelerator and venture fund for food and agtech startups based in Melbourne.

Tess Herbert

Tess Herbert owns and manages a sixth-generation family farming businesses in the central west of New South Wales. The operations consist of a cattle feedlot, lamb and wool production and crops, silage, and hay production. She spends most of her time in her office at the feedlot in its daily operations managing compliance, finances, and human resources for the family business. Tess has a particular long-standing interest in red meat sustainability initiatives and the integrity systems that underpin Australian red meat production.

Tess Herbert is a director of Meat & Livestock Australia, Integrity Systems Company and a member of the Audit, Finance and Risk Committee.

Tess was previously the President of the Australian Lot Feeders Association, a director of the Red Meat Advisory Council, (RMAC) and chaired the Australian Beef Sustainability Framework Steering Group. She was also a board member for Central Tablelands Local Land Services and chaired the Red Meat Panel.

Michael Rogers

Michael joined Teys Australia as General Manager, Corporate Affairs in July 2022 and supports a range of sustainability, workforce and stakeholder outcomes across the business. Teys Australia employs a diverse workforce of more than 4,500 people across eastern Australia.

Michael was previously the inaugural CEO of the Australian Fresh Produce Alliance and worked with the horticulture industry to address a range of sustainability issues including workforce, packaging, food waste, recycling, and emissions. Michael has a wide range of experience in government and industry including through previous roles as General Manager, Trade at Hort Innovation, and Manager, Agribusiness Forum at the Australian Food and Grocery Council. Michael began his career at the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, and later the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, working on policy and international trade issues.

Sarah Stratchan

Sarah oversees the delivery of MLA’s adoption and commercial services. This includes the research and commercial delivery aspects of Livestock Genetics, Meat Standards Australia, Producer Adoption, including adoption of on-farm sustainability practices, within MLA. These programs are driven by the ambitions of the Red Meat 2030 plan to grow the investment in adoption to help double the value of sales from high quality and trusted Australian red meat.

MLA’s adoption programs provide a diverse range of options for producers to engage with and apply research outcomes into their production systems such as the flagship practice change programs of Producer Demonstration Sites and Profitable Grazing Systems programs, as well as recently released products such as Bred Well Fed Well, carbon accounting tools, and Carbon EDGE workshops.

Sarah has a Bachelor of Rural Science qualification from the University of New England and has worked with MLA for over 20 years.

Mark Davie

Mark Davie is a Central Queensland Cattle producer and advocate for beef, the product and the production system. Mark is Chair of the Steering Committee for the Australian Beef Sustainability Framework, a Director of the AgForce Cattle Board and a food manufacturer and marketer for Keppel Brand and Cattlemen’s Beef.

Erica Haliday

Erica is a 5th generation grazier from the New England region of NSW.  She is the current President of Angus Australia and a Board Member of Australia’s most trusted Rural Charity, Rural Aid. 

Erica and her husband run Ben Nevis Angus, one of Australia’s oldest, performance recorded Angus Studs established in 1947. They produce 120 yearling bulls annually which sell right across Australia and run 800 Angus cows. 

Erica has a Bachelor in Agricultural Economics from the University of Sydney, and is recipient of Angus Australia’s scholarship to the University of Illinois in 1994 for winning the National Junior Judging Competition.

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