South Australia’s Allan Piggott, Moorlands, is the captain of the nation’s new peak sheep body which has undergone a major overhaul.
Five state farming representatives have been elected during the inaugural annual general meeting of Sheep Producers Australia (SPA), on Tuesday, following dramatic changes to the governance structure.
Formerly known as Sheepmeat Council of Australia, SPA will now operate as a non-profit public company.
Under the new structure, a board selection committee reviewed the member-nominated candidates which resulted in only two of the previous board securing a position, including Mr Piggott, who was elected as president, and Michael Craig, Harrow, Victoria.
They will join Jamie Heinrich, Kangaroo Island, SA, Ian McColl, Koorawatha, NSW and Bindi Murray, Woodanilling, WA.
SPA chief executive Kat Giles said the new body aimed to find the balance between leadership and representation.
“With the launch of SPA, producers have the opportunity for their voice to be heard nationally through a professional organisation, underpinned by best-practice governance principles through a modernised constitution,” Dr Giles said.
“The new organisation has capacity for individual membership but the solid base of support from the state farming organisations has been the bedrock for many many years.
“The SPA Board is advised by four Policy Committees, which will largely consist of SFO members and the next step will be to appoint those committees. They will be the engine room of policy development and discussion for SPA.”
The initial members are state members, with provision for organisational and individual members once the structure is established.
Another change will see a policy committee established which will have representatives of each SFO at the table, which Dr Giles previously said was to address perceived alliances to members’ state farming organisations.
Previous board directors, including former SCA president Jeff Murray, David Boyle, John Wallace, Rupert Gregg, Chris Wallace-Smith, Ron Cullen, Chris Kemp and Mark Murphy resigned at the AGM.
“We are leaving SCA knowing that the new organisation will better serve Australian sheep producers, reflects best practice governance standards and enables additional capacity in alternate funding and partnership models,” Mr Murray said.
“It has been exciting to be part of its establishment and we look forward to seeing it increase its engagement with producers nationally.”
A decision was made to appoint an independent chair to oversee board governance.