Sarah Parker GAICD
President and General Board Director, located in Victoria and National Rural Women’s Coalition (NRWC) Representative
Sarah relocated from Brisbane to the Goulburn Valley, 10 years ago, to commence dairy farming with her husband Raymond. Within 2 years, they purchased an irrigated dairy farm “Glencliffe”, where they run a stud registered Illawarra and Holstein herd supplying milk to a boutique Italian Cheese Company, FRESH CHEESE.
They also enjoy showing their Illawarra Cows, winning Intermediate and Reserve Intermediate Champion Illawarra Cow at International Dairy Week in 2012, and Reserve Champion in the 2013 All World Red Photographic Competition. Raymond & Sarah were Australian Dairy Farmer of the Year finalists in the 2014 and Sarah was an AgriFutures Victorian Rural Woman of the Year Finalist in 2010.
Sarah holds a Bachelor of Leisure Management, Certificate IV in Work Place Assessment Training and a Masters in Agriculture and Rural Development. She is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Director’s Course.
Sarah’s professional roles have included Young Dairy Development Coordinator and Chief Executive at Murray Dairy; Projects and Development Coordinator at University of Melbourne’s Dookie Campus, and Rural Entrepreneur Developer for Marcus Oldham College. She is currently employed as an Industry Trainer in Certificate II and III Agriculture and Horticulture and as a consultant in the dairy industry.
Sarah and her husband Raymond are both very committed to their industry, agriculture and community. They strongly believe in giving back to the industry and community that provided an opportunity to follow a dream.
Sarah’s current involvement in Agriculture includes the VFF Work Place Relations and Education and Farm Business and Regional Development Committees; Industry Advocate and Farmer Representative for Cows Create Careers; Board Member for Food and Primary Skills Victoria, Publicity Officer for Illawarra Cattle Society of Australia, Victorian Branch and Member of the Murray Dairy Industry Steering Group.
Company Secretary, Youth Coordinator and Board Director representing New South Wales.
Having been ‘born and bred’ on our family beef property at Cumnock (NSW), Amy has an intrinsic passion for agriculture and regional communities. This passion for agriculture led her to pursue a career in Veterinary Science. Amy is currently in her 5th year of studying a Bachelor of Veterinary Biology/ Bachelor of Veterinary Science at Charles Sturt University in Wagga Wagga.
Having been a member of multiple youth committees in the beef industry, Amy recognizes the importance of groups such as the Angus Youth in providing networking opportunities for young people. Being awarded a 2015 AgriFutures Horizons Scholarship granted Amy the opportunity to attend the 2015 AWiA Conference in Alice Springs and since then she has been a dedicated member of the AWiA.
Amy sees a great capacity for encouraging youth in AWiA and believe that the networking opportunities provided through an AWiA membership are priceless. Amy wants to focus on connecting with youth groups in the agriculture industry, with Universities and agricultural schools and to brainstorm with AWiA members about ways that this great organization can connect with youth in our industry
Vice President and Board Director representing Western Australia
Fleur McDonald is a bestselling Australian author, farmer and women’s rights advocate, living in Esperance, Western Australia.
Growing up in Orroroo SA, Fleur always knew she wanted to be a farmer. Fleur studied Agribusiness at Marcus Oldham College and has since farmed on the south coast of Western Australia for over two decades.
Fleur’s publishing career took off when she was discovered through an open call from Allen & Unwin Publishers in 2009. Her first novel Red Dust was the highest selling novel by a debut author that year and was shortlisted for an Australian Book Industry Award and Ruby Award in 2010. With nine of her ten novels set in regional Australia, Fleur is often referred to as ‘the Voice of the Outback’. A champion for the voice of rural people, Fleur has always strived to positively promote and celebrate women in Agriculture.
Fleur is currently involved with the Committee of Farming Champions, the Bay of Isles Community Outreach Committee and the Esperance & Districts Agricultural Show. She’s an active member with the Rotary Club of Esperance Bay and the first female Co-Director of Prickle Farm, a 607-hectare mixed farm and a major fundraising enterprise for the club.
Fleur was a state-finalist for the prestigious AgriFutures (RRIDC) WA Rural Women’s Award in 2017 and is delighted to join the board of the Australian Women in Agriculture in 2018. Fleur recently started a not-for-profit organization to support women and children suffering from domestic violence in remote Australia – Breaking the Silence.
Treasurer and Board Director representing Queensland
Skye Douglass is a Beef Farmer and Owner/Manager of HighBrit Beef. She is a scientist, farmer, small business manager, Landcare volunteer, QRRRWN member, mother, wife, and keen advocate for rural and farming communities. She also chairs the board of directors of Aussie Farmers Foundation.
Skye lives on a beef cattle farm in the South Burnett, Queensland with her husband, a fourth generation pastoralist and beef producer, and their four children. Skye has worked in various capacities as a researcher and consultant on a range of projects including wildlife surveys, environmental and wildlife impacts, feral animal and weed species management, and revegetation projects.
Skye is a graduate of the National Farmer Federation‘s Diversity in Agricultural Leadership Program. She holds a Bachelor of Science with Honours from the University of Southern Queensland and Graduate Diploma of Teaching and Learning. She also holds various qualifications in sustainable agriculture, farming and natural resource management.
Assistant Treasurer & General Board Director located in Queensland
Janine completed at University of Queensland – Gatton; a Bachelor of Applied Science majoring in Animal Production and Rural and Regional Business Management in 2008 which was followed by working agriculturally in the organic poultry industry and beef cattle feedlotting.
Janine has been involved in a range of board and committee positions within the agricultural and community sectors including Network Coordinator and Secretary for the Qld Agricultural Teachers Association, Local, Regional and State Showgirl and Rural Ambassador Competitions. She has also been Vice President of the Qld Chamber of Agricultural Societies and the QCAS Next Gen Leadership Group.
Social Media Coordinator & Board Director representing the Northern Territory
Tiani lives on one of Australia’s most remote cattle stations, Supplejack Downs and this doesn’t stop Tiani Cook from looking out for her community – it’s only made her do more.
From her property 730 kilometres north-west of Alice Springs, Tiani’s role as ICPA’s Northern Territory State President and Publicity Officer is one of her many commitments. She is also chairperson of the Northern Territory School of Distance Education‘s school council, Desert Poppies group organiser.
Tiani is also the founder and managing director of Horses for Curses for Bush Kids. She recently organised the 1000 kilometre Bush Kids Ride from her ‘Suplejack Downs’ home to Darwin, aiming to raise funds for the ICPA and increase awareness about remote learning inequity. It’s an issue close to this mother of four’s heart, with much time over the past 13 years spent teaching her children via Distance Education.
Tiani is a member of the National Rural Women’s Coalition’s Communication Reference Group where she works with other forward-thinking volunteers who represent each state and territory to reach, engage and promote the voices of rural women.
Tiani is a current participant in the Australian Rural Leadership Program and is also studying a Diploma of Agribusiness Management.
Board Director representing Tasmania
Maureen and her husband, Bruce have a sheep and beef cattle property in Northern Tasmania, and she is a firm believer in females being recognised for the role they play on farms.
Maureen is a Past President of Tasmanian Women in Agriculture, current President of Tasmanian Breast Cancer Network, Community Liaison for Breast Cancer Network Australia, participant of the Marcus Oldham Rural Leadership Program and has a background in Banking, Enterprise Centre – Small Business Startup, Stock & Station Agency and currently works part time in Administration for an Aged Care Facility.
She has two children and five grandchildren, loves being with them, as well as enjoying all forms of sport.
Board Director representing Victoria
Maria has been a member of AWIA since 2008 after her invitation to attend the National Rural Women Summit 2008 – Canberra. Maria lives and works on a farm in rural Victoria on an irrigated property just north of Shepparton. She is married to George and together they have two daughters and one granddaughter.
Maria is a Primary Producer and holds a certificate in Horticulture production. Maria is a small business owner and recently completed a Small Business Management Course with RMIT. Maria has a homebased business being Longhaven Orchard where she produces a sophisticated range of jams, jellies and preserves all made from produce from her extensive orchard and garden. Maria was a Scholarship Recipient in 2015 for an Australian Institute of Company Directors Course. Maria in an active participant in her local community being on various committees. Maria is President of the Ethnic Council of Shepparton and District since 2011. Shepparton has a large immigrant community. Maria works off the farm as a Family Day Care in Home Care and is currently studying Diploma in Early Childhood Education and Care.
Maria is a third generation agriculturalist and active community member with a passion for the land and heritage food values. Maria is nonetheless a passionate communicator and training provider, willing to share her experience and deep knowledge of fruit growing, seasonal food production and marketing.
Seconded Board Director from New South Wales
Angela Powditch is a human rights advocate and law graduate from Southern Cross University. Angela lives in rural New South Wales with parents who own are farm and as such is familiar with the issues those in agriculture face.
As well as her passion for rural issues, Angela is passionate about gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls and was fortunate to be a delegate with the UN Women Australia in 2019 and the National Rural Women’s Coalition in 2018 at the United Nations’ Commission on the Status of Women (CSW 62) in New York (the principal global intergovernmental body exclusively dedicated to the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women). Angela received formal recognition in the NSW Parliament in May 2018 for her attendance and presentation at CSW62 and leadership in working to achieve gender equality. Prior to this international experience, Angela was one of 70 students from around the globe selected for (and graduated from) Oxford University’s International Human Rights Law Summer School in 2016.