2019 Speakers

Julia Telford- YBPF 2019 MC

Julia Telford built and runs her business, Engage & Create Consulting from Goondiwindi, South West Queensland. Engage & Creates’ focus is to support the viability and vibrancy of businesses and community organisations across regional Australia.  Julia works with regional communities across the country on a range of projects, with the focus on identifying needs in business and implementing creative solutions to address them. Her passion lies with small businesses, sustainable agriculture and regional women in leadership.

In 2018, Julia was honoured to be one of the 100 Faces of Small Business for Queensland Government and one of the 2018 Australian Financial Review 100 Women of Influence Award, one of 3 finalists in the regional communities category.  In 2017, Julia won the Queensland Rural, Regional and Remote business owner of the year.  Julia was listed as one of the 100 Women in Australian Agribusiness in 2014 and was a finalist in the community contribution category.  She has completed the AICD Company Directors Course, is a board member on Regional Development Australia for Darling Downs South West Queensland, and a member of the Queensland Small Business Advisory Council.

She is also one of 4 directors of the Goondiwindi Business Hub, established in 2013 to provide short and long-term office space for businesses across Goondiwindi and the region.  With her partner Tony Spicer, they have a small block at Goondiwindi where they have Angus steers, dorper sheep and guinea pigs!

Julia is excited to be part of this year's YBPF, after attending some of the very first ever run in Roma.


In a year that has proven to show the resilience of our sector we are very excited to announce this year’s YBPF Property Tour will be a Saleyards Extravaganza! The Roma Saleyards has achieved a 50 year milestone and with this momentous occasion attendees will have the full experience of the Southern Hemisphere’s largest selling complex, incorporating a diverse range of sessions.

In its 50th year, the Roma Saleyards has cracked well over its 11 millionth head of cattle. The largest financial year on record has the yards throughput of 415, 221 head of cattle. A massive task that incorporates a diverse range of our sector from vendors, selling agents, rebate agents, buyers, transport companies, saleyards staff, industry councils and associations, extending to the larger community employment.

This icon of our industry has continued to evolve, and you will witness on the tour the massive expansion that has been undertaken. New drafting facilities, selling yards, modern bull selling ring and the large multi-purpose facility.

A virtual property tour will be hosted by Kate and John Scott. Covering topics relating to their experience of pasture improvements, infrastructure developments, livestock management and overall business decision making.

Hitting the nail on this year’s theme, Back Yourself. Back Your Industry, Daniel and Kasey Phillips will relate to the YBPF masses. A young and passionate couple who established Murgona Cattle Co in 2010 and have been making leaps and bounds in the Santa Gertrudis breed ever since. Along with their classified herd, the Phillip’s run a backgrounding operation as well as a commercial herd.

Maximising production is a fine line between obtaining the right information and capturing gains while maintaining profitability. Nutrition is constantly on the minds of producers and Stocklick Trading’s Donna Weber and Stevie Jackson will be on offer to provide their wealth of knowledge.

Representatives from our leading industry groups will also be touching on topics relevant to challenges at present. From biosecurity to the importance of MLA and their contribution to Australia’s meat industry global competitiveness.

Daniel & Kasey Phillips, Murgona Cattle Co

Daniel & Kasey Phillips founded Murgona Cattle Co after their marriage in 2010. Both with a background in the livestock industry and a burning desire to run a successful cattle stud they set about making a name for themselves, in the seed stock industry, and Santa breed.

While Murgona Santa’s is clearly their passion, operating on a small scale has posed its challenges. Diversification and adaptability has seen the company slowly grow over the last 9 years. Kasey and her ‘assistants’, Taylor 6 & Brian 4, often oversee day-to-day operations allowing Daniel to supplement income by offering grading services to local landholders as well as contract mustering and labour, when time permits.

Currently they run 80 classified females and progeny on “Burradoo” in the Wandoan/Taroom district. Bulls are marketed annually at the Heartland Santa Gertrudis Sale in Roma. They also background a couple hundred head, both steers & heifers, at “Burradoo”, selling them to local feedlots. Recently a commercial herd has been established at “Wallal” Charleville, and they are enjoying watching how their Santa cattle handle these conditions.

Daniel & Kasey aspire to one day hold an on-property sale, but in the meantime are happy to focus on quality not quantity.

Callan EvokeAG

A 21-year-old who grew up on a beef breeding operation 100km North-West of Longreach in Central Queensland. Attended boarding school in Brisbane for five years before taking a gap year on a mixed cropping and cattle property outside of Goondiwindi, gaining an insight and passion for broad-acre farming and an appreciation for agriculture’s ability to be interwoven between sectors. Studied a dual degree of engineering and biotechnology for 18 months at the University of Queensland before deferring in July 2018 to return home, reigniting his passion for agriculture and to help manage the family properties through another tough period of drought. Attended an AgTech conference, EvokeAG, as a future young leader in early 2019 where he connected with another young leader who is running an Agri-food Tech company (MEQ Probe) in South Australia developing an objective meat-eating quality measurement device utilising nanoscale bio-photonics. Started as a Field Technician for MEQ Probe in March 2019 working heavily in data collection and taking MEQ to a commercial scale.


A fierce advocate for increasing in our pride in the industry and working to improve the language used within and around agriculture.

Sam Marwood, Cultivate Farms

Sam Marwood is a community driven problem solver from central Victoria who is redefining the farming and agriculture industry. With a background in environmental science and social entrepreneurship Sam spent his early years as a policy advisor to the Victorian Government before connecting to his roots- farming and all things the environment.

In 2016 Sam recognised an emerging farming problem. Retiring farmers were simply selling off vast amounts of property and with it a deep understanding of farming. All the while young aspiring farmers found it near impossible to acquire the capital and acute knowledge to begin a new generation of farmers.

Answer: Cultivate Farms. A match maker for retiring farmers and want-to- be farmers alike. Since its launch, Cultivate Farms have nurtured many new farming partnerships across Australia, with the first of its kind in Albury, now operating as Hicks Country Beef.

Claire Coates, Freeland Pork

Claire Coates is a farm entrepreneur proving to all Australian aspiring farmers that dreams of farm ownership are possible to realise.

Claire’s farm ownership pathway started with sheep farming, mustering as a Jillaroo in the Northern Territory, Management in Rural Merchandise and Brahman cattle breeding and showing.
Claire assisted her husband Marc in the management/overseeing of a cattle station in QLD for a year and was the Admin/Marketing/Operations Manager for a hay contracting business.
Upon return to Victoria in 2015, plans commenced to establish a free-range pork production system on lease country.

In 2017 Claire pitched the business model and a farm to migrate the existing production onto, through Sam and Cultivate Farms as part of the first Cultivator Program. The pitch was successful, and Claire and Marc were backed by an investor to relaunch, grow and sustain their free- range regenerative farming model and brand on a new farm that is co-owned with the investor.

Dalene Wray, OBE Organics

Dalene Wray’s visionary leadership of a farmer-owned organic beef company has seen OBE Organic emerge as a progressive exemplar for innovation in the broader red meat industry. She is a major force for improving the sustainability & diversity of the Australian beef industry by driving change, innovation and digital adoption at OBE Organic.

Dalene has worked in the organic food industry for over a decade, and for six of those years was based in Hong Kong. In Australia, Dalene continues to wear many hats, investing her time as a Member of the Telstra Queensland Regional Advisory Committee, a Board Member of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Council for Australian Arab Relations, and other industry groups.
Dalene is an in-demand speaker, with addresses in Australia, Mongolia, Qatar, Hong Kong and Mexico.

About OBE Organic
OBE Organic produces the world’s best organic beef. We began in the 1990s as Australia’s first and only premium meat exporter 100% dedicated to the production of organic beef. Formed by a group of far-sighted pastoral families, we raise our cattle in the pure heartland of Australia, where they freely roam across natural organic plains, with hardly any fences.

Shannon Landmark Project Co-ordinator, Northern Genomics Project, QAAFI

Shannon is a veterinarian and coordinator of the Northern Genomics Project. This project aims to develop a genetic test suitable for the northern cattle industry focusing on fertility traits: puberty and wet rebreed. This test can be carried out on a tail hair or DNA sample and can be conducted on cattle from birth. This gives producers an accurate prediction of what a heifer or bull’s reproductive capacity is over its lifetime. The project has been genotyping over 30,000 females from 54 different properties that are based throughout Queensland, the Northern Territory and Western Australia. Shannon coordinates with all the producers, veterinarians, researchers and contractors, travels out to the properties and performs ovarian scanning, pregnancy testing and herd reproductive evaluations. She also works on a number of other complementary research projects including projects on leucaena, Vibriosis, buffalo fly and tick resistance and calf loss. Prior to working for QAAFI she was a cattle veterinarian working in Charters Towers, Longreach and the Atherton Tablelands. Outside of her working role Shannon is completing her Masters of Business Administration, works on her own cattle, is a mother and is the recipient of the Zanda McDonald Award for 2019.

Leanne Kemp, Founder and CEO of Everledger and Queensland Chief Entrepreneur

Leanne Kemp is Founder and CEO of Everledger and Queensland Chief Entrepreneur. She is a prominent figure in the technology sector and recognised internationally as an innovator and leader. Her company Everledger uses Blockchain technology to track high-value assets such as diamonds, art and wine with the aim of increasing transparency and trust with technology.

Leanne co-chairs the World Economic Forum’s Global Future Council on the Future of Manufacturing and takes part in the Global Future Council on Blockchain. She also workstreams at the Global Blockchain Business Council, co-chairs the World Trade Board’s Sustainable Trade Action Group and is on the IBM Blockchain Platform Board of Advisors.

Leanne’s awards include the AIM Global Allan Gilligan Award 2019, Advance Global Australian Awards 2018 for Technology Innovation, and Innovator of the Year 2018 at the Women in IT Awards (London).

In 2018, her entrepreneurial success saw her appointed as the Queensland Chief Entrepreneur in Australia, to develop the state’s startup ecosystem, attract investment and support job creation. She is the first female entrepreneur to hold this position. In 2019 her tenure as Chief Entrepreneur was extended for another year, the first time the role has been extended since its creation.

Bronwyn Roberts

Bronwyn is a cattlewoman with strong ties to the land she calls home in central Queensland. She’s done the hard yards alongside her parents on their family property; immersed herself in the world of sustainable agriculture as a Grazing Management Officer and Project Manager; and extended her skills as Business Development Manager for a leading Wagyu producer. She is now dedicating her extensive skills to building the success of her clients at B R Rural Business.

At the end of high school Bronwyn was discouraged from pursuing a career in her beloved beef industry and was told she was “too smart” for agriculture. Undeterred she set about building her career, expanding her skills in her “town-job” while employing them practically on her family cattle property.

By 2012 Bronwyn was ready for a new challenge and became a Young Farming Champion with Art4Agriculture, where she developed her alter ego Farmer Bron. Farmer Bron bridged the gap between producer and consumer, and the accolades soon followed including AgForce Emerging Leader at the QLD Red Meat Awards; named one of 100 Women in Australian Agribusiness; and Finalist in two categories at the Queensland Regional Community Achievement Awards.

After 10 years in Natural Resource Management, Bronwyn returned to her true love of cattle production and in January 2019, she took the leap and launched B R Rural Business, offering tailored management solutions for productive beef enterprises.

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Barclay Bassett, Director- Bassett Cattle Co

Barclay Bassett is a fourth generation cattle producer from Roma Qld. With his parents Edward and Anna, and wife Amelia, he operates a trading business from their properties in Roma, Morven and Augathella.

Barclay returned to the business in 2010 after graduating from Marcus Oldham. His focus has been on ensuring efficiency across each property.

Barclay’s passions in this role are low stress stock handling, property development and turning grass into kilos of beef. He feels deeply optimistic about the future of the industry and making beef production as productive and efficient as possible.

Merv Schwarz

Born in Kingaroy  on 7/12/50, I am the second of six children from German farmers on the maternal and Austrian Jews on the paternal side. That should give you an insight  into who I have become!

My parents met , married and bought a dairy in Kingaroy. When I was one year old they sold and purchased a dairy at Barmoya, a small district north of Rockhampton. Here is where I grew up with strict Victorian era discipline at home and at school.

With grade 8 education complete, I entered the real world.

Married my first wife at 20 with $24 between us we had 4 children while at the same time worked a regular job (engineering ,fencing ,mechanic and bought old houses renovated them and sold them).

Then bought blocks and built new houses and sold them until I had enough to fulfil my vision to buy a cattle property. Since that time we have had 9 properties and still own 3.

I have had a wonderful life - 3 wives, 5 mothers-in-laws and 10 kids. My best mate is Maree and she has given me the best days of my life.

Alice Mabin, Author and Rural Photographer

As a renowned rural photographer and author, BEFA Entrepreneur of the year, keynote speaker and TED Talk presenter, Alice has astonished readers with her best-selling publications and photographs that celebrate the rich tapestry of life in the Australian Outback.

At a national level she is passionate about influencing the agricultural industry to stand up, be proud and get on with the challenges of securing our future for generations to come. Her agricultural books and videos make you think twice about the way “life has to be done”. Alice Mabin’s unfailing persistence and tenacity is inspiring. She is right - life is too short not to do what you love.

She believes that part of the solution is inspiring people to believe that what they do matters, that they are appreciated, and that we are all connected to each other in ways that make us interdependent. She helps bridge the city-country divide by showing how interconnected we all are. Intertwining the adventures and revelations of life in Al’s typical cheeky style, she helps people to uncover what it really takes to be successful in an ever-changing environment.

Her new book, The Winding Road will be on Aussie shores in time for the Young Beef Producers’ Forum and you will have an opportunity to hear Alice speak about her secrets to uncovering your brilliance, fulfilling your dreams and creating success, even when you don’t know how.

Alice Mabin
Luke Evans
Luke Evans, Zanda McDonald Award Recipient

Luke Evans is a Cattle Station Manager with his partner Emma Croake and 20 month old son Riley, for Cleveland Agriculture on the Barkly Tablelands Northern Territory.

Rockhampton Downs Station is 1.2 million Acres consisting of Brahman Cross cattle, produced for the export and Southern feeder markets.

Since being at Rockhampton Downs we have undertaken an extensive water and infrastructure development program, and now starting to replicate on several other stations.

Luke is also in partnership with two properties in north west NSW with British bred females producing cattle for the southern feedlot markets.

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Cam Nicholson, Nicon Rural Services

Cam Nicholson is a partner in Nicon Rural Services, a consulting business near Geelong working with the grazing and cropping industries and in natural resource management.

Cam has been involved in many farmer programs for the GRDC, MLA, Dairy Australia, Southern Framing Systems and Landcare. He provides consultancy advice to farmers and lectures on animal and pasture systems at Marcus Oldham College.

His most recent work has focussed on understanding and discussing risk in farming businesses and how to enhance decision making.

He and his wife Fiona run a 400 ha beef and sheep farm on the Bellarine Peninsula turning off cattle for the long fed Japanese market, lambs and wool.

Amanda Moohen
Amanda Moohen, Regional Manager AACo

Amanda Moohen is the Regional Manager - Intensive for the Australian Agricultural Company (AACo). She oversees the higher management of Aronui Feedlot, Goonoo Feedlot and their associated backgrounding programs. Amanda is based at Aronui Feedlot, Dalby Qld.

Amanda has over 10 years of experience within the Australian lot feeding industry. Prior to joining AACo, Amanda was the Feedlot Manager at Wonga Plains Feedlot for the Camm Agricultural Group. This is where she gained her extensive knowledge and experience, progressing her career from administration officer to Feedlot Manager in that time.

Amanda is an active leader and mentor in the feedlot industry including being the Founder and current President of the non for profit organisation - Women of Lot Feeding (WOLF) and just recently being nominated to sit on the Australian Lot Feeding Association Board as a Councillor for the next term.

In 2015 Amanda was a participant in the inaugural Graeme Acton Beef Connections Program which is the brain child of the Beef Australia Next Generation Committee. If it wasn’t for this amazing mentoring program the idea of WOLF may not have ever eventuated.

Amanda is extremely passionate and dedicated to the upskilling of people within the entire lot feeding industry. She believes by creating prosperity through a collaboration of their people, livestock and land, the feedlot industry will continue to thrive.

Kerrie Richards, Merino Country

Faced with drought & low commodity prices, Richmond Wool & Beef Producer, Kerrie Richards established Merino Country in 1993 value-adding to the raw fleece and taking the product through to the end market, direct to consumers.

Developing an easy care, soft Merino fabric designed for comfort & performance in hot and cold conditions, the range includes travel gear, activewear, workwear, thermals and the amazing Wundies – 100% Merino wool underwear, incredibly comfortable and great for skin conditions including the Baa Bra!

With government contracts, direct sales to 20,000 customers, Kerrie & her husband Malcolm Pain, work with local woolgrowers & processors to produce fabrics & garments with control of specifications of the raw wool, yarn types, fabric construction, design and manufacturing of garments.

The versatility and natural qualities of 100% Australian Merino wool gives Merino Country the point of difference combined with an ability to provide a quick response service with products that provide solutions to customers problems whether they’re worn for Defence work in Afghanistan, travelling around the world, a long day in the saddle or relief for chemo burns!

Kerrie’s passion, determination, persistence & ability to think & act outside the square have helped create the successful agri-business & Australian manufacturer that Merino Country is today. Sustainable, Ethical and Local… Naturally!

pat gleeson
Pat Gleeson, General Manager at Oakey Beef Exports

Mr Gleeson is a fourth generation cattle producer from Crows Nest in Southern Queensland, who began his working life as an apprentice butcher and has worked his way through many roles in the beef processing sector, from beef boning through to his current role as the General Manager at Oakey Beef Exports . Personally, Pat has extensive experience and professional training that spans more than three decades in cattle production, beef processing, as well as management across the supply chain. As an agribusiness specialist - producer and processor, Pat has applied his focus on developing people, company culture and innovation while managing financial results through strategy execution. Pat is an active member of the industry, participating on many boards and advisory panels including, the Export Meat Industry Advisory Committee, the Board of the Australian Meat Industry Council, the Queensland Beef Industry Roundtable and is a Director of the Australian Meat Processing Corporation.

Dr Peter McGilchrist, University of New England

Peter is a senior lecturer in meat science at the University of New England. Peter’s research revolves around ensuring global consumer satisfaction of Australian red meat. This research covers all aspects of beef and sheep supply-chains focusing on critical control points which affect the eating quality of meat from on-farm to the consumer, with a heavy focus on the relationship between genetics and meat quality. Peter is a member of the Meat Standards Australia beef and sheepmeat scientific pathways committee, president of the Australian Intercollegiate Meat Judging Association and eating quality program manager of the advanced livestock measurement technologies project. Peter teaches undergraduate rural science, agriculture and agribusiness students at UNE and is very passionate about everything from soil to scotch fillets!

Anthony Dunn, ‘Echo Hills’ Roma

I am a fifth-generation Australian farmer and have worked in many different areas of the agricultural industry. My passion is beef cattle and I have built a career in management of beef production, from intensive breeding through to producing high quality prime beef.
My current role is as Livestock Manager at ‘Echo Hills’ near Roma, where I live with my family. Our focus is to produce a high quality natural beef whilst improving and building the integrity of the health of the land we use.
I am passionate about producing a quality natural product for the consumer; the beef production system; implementing new technologies; sharing information between producers; and mindful grazing / farming practices used on the land.
The Australian Beef industry is something that I have always wanted to contribute towards at a representative level. My industry roles include being a Director on the AgForce Cattle Board, a representative on the Research Development and Adoption committee for Cattle Council Australia, along with a representative on the Southern Qld Regional Beef Research Committee. My efforts are aimed at building a future in agriculture for the younger generations.
I pride myself in keeping up with new technologies and investigating how the beef industry can adopt new strategies to help build on the success from the past and work towards an exciting future.

Barbara Bishop

Barbara is the Director of Capacity in People Consulting (T/A Barbara Bishop & Associates) and specialises in building people capacity through facilitation, training, coaching and mentoring.

Barb has worked with young people, managers, supervisors and team members across a range of industries throughout Australia. Her expertise and experience are in the areas of self-management, people dynamics and people management.

Barb has been passionate about rural and regional industries since growing up on a farm in North West New South Wales. She is equally passionate about creating processes and programs that inspire and empower people to respond proactively to their own needs and the needs within families, workplaces and communities.
Barbara is recognized nationally for her work on improving individual, team and organisation performance through her unique processes of facilitation and development approaches in businesses throughout Australia.

Barb originally trained as a teacher in Agricultural Science, has managed Agricultural Colleges and supported and developed people from the agricultural sector for the past 30 years.

Barbara is MBTI accredited, Fellow of Australian Institute of Management, Member of the Australian Human Resource Institute, Member of Australian Institute of Training and Development. She has a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment (TAE 40110).

Currently Barb is working on projects with MLA, Dairy Australia, Sunpork, Hong Kong Jockey Club, Smithfield Cattle Company, Lansdowne Pastoral Company, Beef Australia and other businesses throughout Regional Australia – NSW, Qld, NT, WA.


Graeme Acton Beef Connections Mentoring Program

Barb has facilitated the Beef Connections Mentoring Program for 2015 & 2018.

This program is the initiative of Beef Australia and is designed to give young people involved in the beef industry an opportunity to develop their industry leadership skills, while giving them the opportunity to have a mentor to help them achieve their project expectations while also participating in Beef Australia 2021.


What past participants have said about the program

Barb’s positive attitude; Excellent matching of participants and mentors; Excellent structure; Content was very relevant to personal development; Cocktail dinner was amazing, very well-run program; Getting everyone involved/interacting; Establishing mentor/partner relationships; Workshop presentation and preparation; support from mentors. Comments from Graeme Acton Beef Connections Mentor Partners and Mentors

Ben Banks

A fifth generation grazier Ben Banks has sheep and wool running through his veins. Along with his family Ben lives and operates their 48 562ha sheep and cattle properties 90km west of Blackall.The family currently graze approximately 22 000 sheep and 500 head of cattle on their 5 properties.

After attending the Longreach Pastoral College and working at Egelabra Merino Stud, Ben returned home with soon to be wife Oona in 2006. Ben and Oona began a contract crutching business, that soon expanded into sheep pregnancy scanning that now services clients in a 600km radius of Blackall. Ben and Oona are passionate about their careers agriculture. With current record prices for both meat and fibre they are driven to expand the family businesses.

The Banks family pride themselves on creating a balance in their business between proven traditional practices and cutting edge innovation.
The family aims to continue creating a thriving business financially, environmentally and personally with a long term outlook.

Felicity Brumpton, Miss Jolly Jumbuck

Felicity Brumpton is a young Merino stud breeder from Mitchell, Queensland. She works along side her parents on their mixed enterprise properties consisting of both stud and commercial Merino sheep, cattle, rangeland goats and cropping. She and her two brothers also own Jolly Jumbuck Poll Merino stud which they registered in 2007.

After finishing school, Felicity worked on a Northern Territory cattle station and then went on to university at UNE to study a Bachelor of Animal Science (Livestock Production).

She has been fortunate to travel to China on the AWI young woolgrowers tour to explore the wool processing pipeline and develop customer relationships with Australia’s largest wool buyers. Felicity also spent the first few months of this year touring the US on the Australian Meat Judging Team to gain experience in the American lamb and beef industries.

She has since returned home to focus on growing her stud and to implement new technologies to obtain more objective measurements that can be used in their breeding programs.