Executive Members

NEW BOARD DIRECTORS SOUGHT
FarmLink Research invites expressions of interest from individuals who have a strong passion for innovation in agriculture and a willingness to work with a committed board to advance the objectives of FarmLink.
FIND OUT MORE
 
Chair
Darryl Harper
Darryl farms with his wife Christina, his brother and sister in law and parents. The partnership operates a grain focussed mixed farming business in the Ariah Park and Barmedman districts.
Darryl worked on the family farm before and after graduating with an Associate Diploma in Farm Management from Orange Agricultural College and is an active member of the NSW Farmers Association.
Darryl has always been passionate about farming and views agriculture as the first stage in the food business. Darryl realised the benefits of research from a young age as the property hosted NSW Agriculture and CSIRO field trials. He considers himself fortunate to be able to work in an industry he likes, and enjoys nothing more than seeing changes in farming methods boost productivity in his own business and the farming community in general.
Darryl and Christina have three young children.  Darryl enjoys the occasional game of tennis and being involved with community and development associations.

Deputy Chair
Robert McColl
Rob and wife Joh operate a contract farming and management business in the Binalong/Galong District. As well as operating a farm at Boorowa which is mainly cropped with dual purpose varieties which allow for autumn and winter cattle and sheep trading opportunities as they arise.
Rob completed a Degree in Farm Business management at Orange Agricultural College in 1999 and has worked in the Turf and Pork industry as well. Rob also has been a chair of the Harden Murrumburrah Landcare stubble project at one time and also a graduate of the Farmlink Rural Leadership program in 2011.

Director
Lisa Anderson

Lisa Anderson is leading FarmLink into a new era, being the first female appointed as a Director on the Board of the organisation. Lisa says, “I have a passion for excellence in agriculture. I have been lucky to have been exposed to many experienced and inspirational leaders in this field. I’m keen to contribute to our industry.”
Lisa is a partner in her mixed family farming enterprise, Elwood Pastoral Co, with her husband Kerry, at The Gap located between Coolamon and Wagga. Together they have been early adopters of technology having been on 9m Controlled Traffic Farming for 15 years. Their close proximity to both Charles Sturt University and the Department of Primary Industries has resulted in numerous collaborations over the years including various trials and hosting a visiting Chinese delegation. They have also been involved in the seeds industry for many years as producers of certified sub-clover seed, including Newseeds Pty Ltd, a collection of producers which had the production rights for Riverina sub-clover.
Lisa brings a different set of skills to FarmLink. She practised as a solicitor locally for nearly 20 years and has broad ranging experience in the area of rural commercial work. Lisa has a Bachelor of Economics and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Sydney. She joins our Risk and Audit sub committee.
Lisa has also made an ongoing contribution to a number of community organisations, including farming groups such as Farm 2000 and Ag n Chat, as well as school and community groups.
Included in Lisa’s vision for FarmLink is for the organisation to be about supporting farming families to achieve best practice. “It is about growing the educational outcomes of all in our region to produce water efficient crops and livestock.”
Lisa and Kerry have three children. “The future is theirs. We need to adapt to the way they learn and the endless possibilities created by technology and our national connections.”

Director
Bernard Hart
Bernard Hart is a mixed famer from Junee Reefs and was one of the first farmers to grow rape seed (canola) in NSW. For many years he has been heavily involved with research organisations including GRDC, CSIRO, FarmLink, the University of Sydney, Pork CRC, CSU Wagga, Waratah Seeds and the Australian Oilseed Federation.
Bernard has a lifetime of experience in developing zero till farming systems and pursuing his interest in crop monitoring and performance. He also has helped develop new crops and pastures such as lucerne grazing rotations for broad acre farming and has a strong interest in seed production as a partner in Hart Bros seeds.
Today, Bernard is still working with the team at Hart Bros Seeds who are strongly involved with industry organisations, breeders, agricultural advisers, rural resellers and grower groups to ensure the most current and relevant information is gathered and delivered to their clients and the wider rural community.
Due to his experience in the Southern grains industry as a farmer and working with research organisations over many years, Bernard is currently the Chairman of the Research Development, and Extension Committee. 


Director
Robert Patterson
Robert Patterson has been a farm management consultant based in Cootamundra since 1978 and is the founding partner of the consultancy firm Rural Management Strategies Pty Limited.
He has BAgrSc plus MAgrSc degrees and is a Graduate of Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Due to his experience in business and financial management, Robert is currently a Director of FarmLink plus a member of the Audit & Risk Committee.

Director
Michael Sinclair
Temora farmer, Michael Sinclair, has rejoined the FarmLink board after a number of years’ absence after initially serving on the inaugural board. Michael operates a mixed farming business with his wife, Edwina, and parents, Graham and Lorraine, in the Temora district. He graduated with a Bachelor of Agricultural Science from Charles Sturt University, and worked as an agronomist for a number of years before returning to the family farm full-time. Michael and Edwina have three children – Catie, Angus and Finn, who he is happy to encourage into a career in agriculture, as it provides some great and varied opportunities.
Michael encourages growers to get involved with the investment of their grain and livestock levies into research. He believes FarmLink provides a conduit between growers, advisors and the research community to develop strategies to improve productivity and profitability in agriculture.
Director
Ron Heinrich
  
Ron has over 40 years of experience in Corporate and Commercial Law. He is highly regarded for his expertise in assisting clients in issues requiring his broad experience in mergers and acquisitions, corporations law, trade practices law, revenue law (he is recognised as a Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) by the Tax Institute), insurance law and administrative law. Ron advises on all aspects of mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance and probity, commercial litigation, defence of professional indemnity insurance claims, the drafting of insurance policy wordings, reinsurance agreements, developing due diligence systems for compliance purposes and trusts and estate planning.
Ron has contributed extensively to the legal profession, both in Australia and internationally. He is a past President of the Law Society of New South Wales, the Law Council of Australia and the Commonwealth Lawyers Association. He is also a past director and Chairman of LawCover Pty Limited. He is a past Chairman of the Law Society’s Professional Conduct Committee and has been involved in the investigation and prosecution of solicitors guilty of professional misconduct, fraud and corruption. He is also a past Chairman of the Law Society’s Medico-Legal Liaison and Alternative Dispute Resolution Committees. Ron was formerly Chairman of the Law Council’s National Harmonization Committee, Professional Indemnity Insurance Working Group and its ad hoc Committee on the review of the Insurance Contracts Act.

Ron’s skills are:
  • Revenue law, Trusts and Estate planning
  • Administrative law
  • Corporations law
  • Trade Practices law
  • Mergers and acquisitions
  • Insurance law (including defence of professional indemnity claims)
  • Commercial litigation
  • Drafting insurance policy wording (professional indemnity and directors and officers)
  • Reinsurance agreements
  • Developing due diligence systems for compliance purposes – APRA and ASIC. 
Ron and TressCox Lawyers are providing us with legal and governance support on a pro-bono basis - this quality professional support is a wonderful asset to the business.

CEO
Cindy Cassidy
Cindy brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the role. Most recently she was General Manager, Technical at Wheat Quality Australia a not for profit company responsible for the nation’s wheat variety classification and related activities.
Cindy grew up on a sheep and grain farm at Ariah Park and has worked in organisations such as CSIRO, the Australian Barley Board, AWB ltd and most recently Wheat Quality Australia. These progressively more senior roles have all had a technical focus – delivering innovation and improvement to the Australian grains industry. Cindy has a Bachelor of Science from Macquarie University, Sydney and a Masters of Agriculture from Sydney University.  
Cindy is excited to be a part of FarmLink Research and making a contribution to agriculture in our region.