Michael’s passion has always been to facilitate good practice being informed by good science, particularly for environmentally sustainable and productive landscapes. In addition to being contracted as Managing Director of the Foundation, he has been privileged to lead and manage several research organisations including:
· CEO, Plant Biosecurity Cooperative Research Centre
· Director and Acting Executive Director, Davren Global Pty Ltd
· Non-Executive Director, Cooperative Research Centre Association
· Non-Executive Director, Cotton Research and Development Corporation
· Chief Executive Officer, Frogtech Pty Ltd, Frogtech New Zealand (GeoSphere Ltd)
· Director and Centre Director, Primary Industries Climate Challenges Centre
· Executive Director, Land & Water Australia
· Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director, Cooperative Research Centre for Greenhouse Accounting
He recently finished his role as the CEO of the Plant Biosecurity CRC, leading the national science effort that contributes to the safeguarding of plant industries from biosecurity threats; especially the challenge of taking our good quality science and having it implemented through our many partners. As CEO he led the redevelopment of the strategic plan and a six-year investment plan with the PBCRC partners, resulting in a highly successful CRC which will deliver an estimated net benefit equivalent to an estimated 11% increase in plant biosecurity funding annually for 30 years and a cost:benefit ratio more than double predicted.
Sebastian is an electro-mechanical technician and has studied electronic engineering at the University of Buenos Aires. He has experience in designing embedded devices, mostly in hardware design and manufacturing process. He has been working in the last 10 years turning ideas into products.
He is co-founder at LESS Industries, a startup which offers a suite of products that use Internet of Things technologies to improve profitability of agricultural and industrial processes through smart monitoring. For example monitoring and control solutions for agriculture and the environment such us automatic irrigation control systems.
Sebastian was awarded with the Young Entrepreneur Award by The ex-Minister of Foreign Affairs, Julie Bishop, and with the CITA award for the innovation in Agriculture.
He is the creator of the Robotics Day, the largest robotics event in Latin America where more than 10.000 people attended.
Bree Grima (B. Science (Hons), B. Env Science, B. Photography) is the Managing Director for Bundaberg Fruit and Vegetable Growers, the regional representative organisation for horticultural producers in the Wide Bay Burnett.
In her role Bree liaises closely with Industry to ensure representation and information is a two-way path to help growers increase their productivity and profitability and thus grow the fruit, vegetable, herb and nut industries of the Region.
Bree holds representative positions with the Queensland Horticulture Council, Regional Development Australia (Wide Bay Burnett), is the Chair of the CQUniversity Regional Engagement Committee, a Director of the Business Enterprise Centre (Bundaberg), and a committee member of the Sunwater Irrigators Advisory Committee, Coastal Burnett Groundwater Management Advisory Committee, Mary River Catchment Coordinating Committee and Local Marine Advisory Committee.
Bree regularly connects with Regional Council and Local and State members of Government on issues relevant to Agribusinesses in the Region.
Professor Brown is Director of the Institute for Future Farming Systems as CQUniversity and has a substantive position as Professor of Horticultural Science. He held the position of Head of the School of Agricultural Science at the University of Tasmania prior to taking up his current appointment at CQUniversity. He had previously held positions as Deputy Director of the Tasmanian Institute for Agricultural Research and Senior Lecturer in Horticultural Science at the University of Tasmania. Professor Brown has had a long engagement with Australia’s horticultural industries through participation in state and national industry planning workshops and involvement in reviews of national horticultural research programs.
Professor Brown was awarded his PhD in Horticultural Science at the University of Tasmania in 1992, and has worked in horticultural research and teaching positions for twenty years since completing his PhD. He is a leading horticultural researcher in Australia and is a past president of the Australian Society for Horticultural Science.
Professor Brown’s research approach is to develop improved horticultural industry agronomic and post-harvest practices based on sound scientific knowledge. This approach has been applied in over 30 large industry supported research grants and consultancy contracts, and resulting crop management recommendations that have increased profits of Australian horticultural companies by millions of dollars. He has authored over 100 book chapters, journal articles, conference papers and industry reports.
Market Access Focus Team Leader, Queensland Department of Agriculture and Forestry (QDAF).
Over 25 year’s experience in fruit fly research and currently leads both preharvest and postharvest market access teams for the Queensland Government. His team have successfully developed export protocols using both chemical (insecticides and fumigants) and physical (heat, cold and irradiation) treatments in a range of tropical and subtropical crops.
Peter is the Chairman of the United Nations /FAO Phytosanitary Measures Research Group has recently been appointed to the International Plant Protection Commission treatment panel which is responsible for approving treatment schedules for global trade.
Regional Biosecurity Coordinator for the Wide Bay Burnett Regional Organisation of Councils
Josh is a Regional Biosecurity Coordinator with the Wide Bay Burnett Regional Organisation of Councils. Having joined the organisation in 2018, Josh has been assisting the Wide Bay Burnett local government agencies to deliver their regional biosecurity strategy – the Wide Bay Burnett Regional Biosecurity Strategy 2017-2022. The Strategy, which has been adopted by all local governments in the Wide Bay Burnett, aims to firstly prevent new invasive species coming into the region, whilst also making sure that the community has the necessary skills to manage this invasive species that are already established. Josh also has diverse experience on a range of invasive species matters across Queensland and has worked for both local government and state government organisations.