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We Continue to Support a Vibrant Wheatbelt Community

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On Thursday 19 October, we hosted our Annual General Meeting, with more than 50 people attending at Bridgeley Community Centre in Northam. We farewelled long-time Board member Julie Flockart. In her departing message, Julie expressed her pride in being involved with Wheatbelt NRM and said that she had gained more from her service than she had given. We wish her well for the future.

This year we are pleased to announce Henry Brown will be joining the board and Richard Devlin will be returning for another term. Henry is a farmer from Yelbeni and has a background in accounting and law. He is also the independent chair of the Wheatbelt NRM Audit and Risk Committee. Richard’s experience in national and international agribusiness and his passion for outdoor activities underpins his passion for the needs of the Wheatbelt environment.   

We warmly welcome Henry and look forward to working with him over the next three years.

We saw Chris Marris appointed as our new Chair and Erika Techera as Deputy Chair. Chris is an aging young farmer, certified practising marketer and cycling tragic. He has a passion for the land he farms with his wife and three boys in Quellington, enjoys sharing his local and international marketing and communication management experience through his teaching at Curtin University, and loves contributing to the local community. Erika is a Professor at UWA Law School and a former Director of Oceans Institute, UWA. She is a qualified Barrister and graduate of Australian Institute of Company Directors. She teaches on law, policy and governance and has published numerous articles on environmental law and governance. 

We would like to say thank you to Debra Rule, who has been Chair of the Board since 2018. We thank you for your 5 years on the Board as Chair, the success and position of the organisation are owed in great deal to her guidance and leadership. 

Our 2022/2023 Annual Report, detailing the progress made on our various projects, such as the Malleefowl, Dung Beetles, revegetation, pest control and perennial feed, was also presented to the attending audience, and approved by our Board.

"There has been much change and a bit of turmoil at Wheatbelt NRM this year and I admire the CEO and staff for their stamina, passion and resilience in making sure we successfully completed the final year of the Regional Lands Partnership whilst also preparing our tender response for the next five years of this fee for service program." - Debra Rule, Chair

“The staff have worked tirelessly towards the successful delivery of these projects, sometimes under challenging conditions, a reflection of their dedication towards ensuring that we continue to support a vibrant Wheatbelt community.” - Karl O’Callaghan, CEO 

Chief Executive Officer, Karl O’Callaghan presented a video summary of this year’s projects, to the attendees. The video celebrates the highlights of our project work in the region to wrap up 5 years of NLP2. 

Special guest speaker Larissa Taylor wrapped up the event with a presentation sharing her insights and learnings around the interrelationship between geostrategic trade, food security, investment and climate policies that will impact greatly our primary industries here in the Wheatbelt. Larissa is an executive in the corporate agribusiness sector and a board member with the CAAR. It’s vital that our local farmers and agribusiness are part of the discussions and planning, to find out more and to get involved with our state government’s draft climate change legislation visit: Climate change legislation

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