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For over 20 years Rabobank has proudly recognised agribusiness leaders from across Australia and New Zealand.

Bringing together vision and courage, their leadership inspires others and provides a pathway for the future.

By recognising these leaders, Rabobank is shining a light on the agribusiness sector and sharing the stories of those who are making a meaningful contribution to building a stronger agricultural industry and community.  

In 2023 Rabobank introduced the inaugural Rabobank Community Leadership Award, recognising grassroots initiatives providing tangible, meaningful benefit to our rural & ag communities in Australia and New Zealand.

  • 2023 Award Recipients Videos
  • Previous Award Winners
  • Award Winner Case Studies
  • 2023 Award Recipients Videos
  • Fiona Simson

    2023 Rabobank Leadership Award Recipient

     

    As the 2023 Rabobank Leadership Award recipient, Fiona Simson is a prominent innovator and influencer in the Australian agrifood sector and brings a wealth of leadership and governance expertise. She is also a farmer from the Liverpool Plains in NSW where she and her family run a mixed farming enterprise including broadacre cropping and breeding commercial Poll Hereford cattle.

    Fiona has been an agricultural industry leader at both a state and federal level since 2008, and was elected in 2016 as the first female President of the National Farmers Federation in its 40 year history. She also Chairs the recently established Future Food Systems CRC, is a Commissioner and Chair of the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research, sits as a Director on the Boards of Australian Made Australian Grown, Australian Farmers Fighting Fund and is Patron of the National Rural Press Club and Gunnedah Gatepost Community Support Centre.

    Kate Scott

    2023 Rabobank Emerging Leaders Award Recipient

     

    As the 2023 Rabobank Emerging Leader, Kate Scott is passionate about New Zealand’s primary industry and the environment, working across a broad range of sectors.

    Kate is Executive Director of Landpro a company that has grown from a staff of one to a team of 30, working with farmers to produce practical farm environmental plans that balance profitability and sustainability. In 2017, Kate was awarded a Nuffield scholarship and the following year travelled to the Netherlands for a global farming conference, followed by an eight-week tour of six other countries looking at different farming systems and technologies.

    Boys to the Bush

    2023 Rabobank Community Award Recipient - Australia

     

    Boys to the Bush is a grassroots not for profit organisation working within local communities across regional New South Wales and Victoria to proactively and compassionately address local youth issues.

    The positive impact the program has had on young boys and men has been recognised with the initiative taking out the inaugural 2023 Rabobank Community Leadership Award, which supports the Rabo Client Council theme addressing the challenges and opportunities in farming and agribusiness. This aligns with our focus on rural health, promoting awareness and access to mental health services in rural communities, and long-term industry capacity and agricultural education, and also entitles Boys to the Bush a $25,000 bursary.

    Growing Future Farmers

    2023 Rabobank Community Award Recipient - New Zealand

     

    Growing Future Farmers aims to accelerate a graduate's career from entry-level Essential Farm Skills Programme to advanced Farm Skills and Business Management.

    Active in the community, Growing Future Farmers’ initiative closely aligns with the Client Council theme of long-term industry capacity - supporting the future of the food & agriculture industry by growing capabilities, skills and attracting talent.

    When finding and training skilled workers in New Zealand’s sheep, beef and deer sectors became a growing issue for many farming businesses, a small group of like-minded producers came together to address the problem themselves.

    A collaborative training and development programme was launched to support the skills shortage through industry-led and practical work experience for motivated young people and providing them with an industry respected and employer led career pathway. This award entitles Growing Future Farmers with a $25,000 bursary to support their initiative.

  • Previous Award Winners
  • Award Winner Case Studies

Rabobank Leadership Awards

Rabobank Leadership Award

The award honours an accomplished agribusiness leader who has, as a senior executive, led sustained growth and commercial success while demonstrating a broader contribution to the sustainability and prosperity of the F&A industry and community. This accomplished agribusiness leader:

  • Has made a significant contribution to the Australian and/or New Zealand food & fibre production and agribusiness sectors consistently, over time
  • Exemplifies outstanding leadership in building, rejuvenating, or expanding a commercial agribusiness
  • Is a driver of change and innovation, who fosters a culture of continuous improvement and courageous decision making to overcome challenges and embrace opportunities
  • Demonstrates clear vision and purpose in inspiring and achieving sustainable growth and future prosperity at both a corporate and industry level
  • Is an authentic leader who leads by example with integrity, champions diversity, inclusion and collaboration, and drives positive community and environmental impact throughout the F&A ecosystem

 

 

 

 

Rabobank Emerging Leader Award

The award acknowledges the contribution and role of up-and-coming farmers, and those in the wider agribusiness sector, who demonstrate strong leadership potential to help take the industry sustainably and prosperously into the future. Including an individual who:

  • Has made a noticeable contribution to the Australian and/or New Zealand food & fibre production and agribusiness sectors in a short time frame
  • Is purposeful and impactful in their current role and developing leadership qualities that will add future value to the agribusiness industry
  • Demonstrates strong business acumen, entrepreneurial thinking and exhibits courage, maturity and resilience in decision making
  • Embraces change and innovation, who fosters a culture of continuous improvement
  • Is an authentic leader who leads by example with integrity, promotes diversity and inclusion, and demonstrates community and environmental consciousness
  • Shows vision and action in driving sustainability and profitability outcomes, and is already developing strong networks and beginning to influence positive change


 

Rabobank Community Leadership Award

This NEW award recognises two outstanding initiatives providing tangible, meaningful benefit to our rural & ag communities in Australia and New Zealand.

Grassroots programs and initiatives which:


  • Contribute to the sustainable growth, vitality and resilience of the agricultural industry and/or rural communities
  • Align with one or more of the Rabo Client Council themes addressing the challenges and opportunities in farming and agribusiness such as:
    • Long-term industry capacity & agricultural education - support the future of the food & agriculture industry by growing capabilities, skills and attracting talent
    • Sustainability - drive sustainable practices and positive environmental impact within the food & agriculture industry
    • Rural/urban divide - increase understanding of the importance of the agriculture industry and how our food is produced to help bridge the divide between country and city
    • Rural health - promote awareness and/or address access to physical and mental health services in rural communities
    • Adaption/disruption - challenge the status quo and bring new ideas / solutions to the rural sector