New faces join youth council

By Country News

Dustin Kemp from Rochester and Strathbogie’s Alistair Tame will join two other new faces on the Young Farmer Advisory Council.

Forming part of a multi-talented group of young agricultural leaders, the duo will make up a quarter of the eight-member council advising government on proposals and issues facing young farmers.

‘‘We had a meeting last Wednesday (August 22) to get our bearings and see how it’s going to work,’’ Mr Kemp said.

‘‘There are a range of recommendations from past advisory councils and so we’ll be working with the department as they implement some of those.

‘‘Right now, there are no specific tasks we’ll be heading into but we did discuss the impending drought.’’

Mr Tame said despite not attending the first meeting, he would look to bring a different perspective to the table.

‘‘Growing up on a fine wool sheep farm, I had a lot of hands-on experience with farming from an early age,’’ he said.

‘‘I moved off the farm when I was 17 to pursue a degree in electrical and electronic engineering and worked in the field for a few years before heading back to Strathbogie and starting my own business.

‘‘I’m now fully employed within the ag tech sector.

‘‘I suppose my value lies in my slightly non-traditional path to the ag sector.

‘‘Having had formal training as an engineer, I can offer a slightly different view on some of the topics that may arise during the meetings.’’

The other members selected are Purnim’s Sarah McLean and Mildura’s Jennifer Zappia.

Two returning members of the Young Farmers Ministerial Advisory Council — Sarah Thompson and Tom McGrath — have been reappointed to the council.

They will be joined by Pete Burgess from the Young Agribusiness Professionals and Jess Pilgrim from the Victorian Young Farmers Network.