WENDY JAMES - Business Programs Support & Client Support Officer
Wendy joined RBT in 2009 after over 30 years in banking. Experience includes senior positions in Sales & Marketing, Lending, Deceased Estates and Insurance. Commitment to excellence was recognised during her role as State Manager of Member Services. Active involvement in her family’s orchard business gave a clear understanding of the many and complex issues faced by rural families. Volunteer roles include advocacy, Mental Health and grants.
Qualifications include Adv. Dip. Agricultural Management, Dip. Community Services (Financial Counselling), Small Group Training, Project Management and Business Administration. Wendy enjoys using her life experience to assist others
KARLIE JOHNSTON - Reception/Administration Officer
Karlie joined the RBT team in April this year after returning to the workforce from maternity leave. Karlie has had significant hospitality experience however was looking for a role that fitted into her new family life. Karlie is completing the Certificate III in Business Administration and is a great asset to the team. On her days off Karlie enjoys spending time with her daughter, reading, cooking and going on adventures with her family that includes 2 German Shepherds
KIM WOOLLEY - Finance & Admin Officer
Kim joined the team in April 2016 to assist Maree in finance and general admin. Coming from an Accounting & Finance position in the banking industry, Kim has many skills to assist the team and clients as much as possible. She does not have a farming background but does manage a small livestock holding of 11 guinea pigs.
MARGUERITE SMITH - Finance & Business Programs Client Support Officer
Marguerite joined us in August to support our Corporate Services team in financial reporting. Marguerite is a qualified Accountant for over 20 years. Marguerite is also studying her Diploma of Community Services (Financial Counselling) and in the future working alongside the RFC's. Married with 3 adult children and enjoys weekends away at her shack at Hawley beach.
BOARD OF GOVERNANCE
Rural Business Tasmania is governed by a seven member Executive, supported by the Reference Group who provides advice and assistance as required. Members are invited to the Board as a representative of community, industry or member group.
Mr Geoff Fader - Chair
Geoff is a marketeer by profession. He has previously held senior positions with one of Australia’s largest automobile manufacturers, managing director of Tasmania’s largest accredited advertising agency and principal of a marketing consultancy. Geoff is currently a director and former chair of the Council of Small Business Organisations of Australia, chair of the Tasmanian Small Business Council and chair of the family owned business, Australian Shipping Supplies. He is a past national president and life member of both the Australian Marketing Institute and Group Training Australia. He was the founding chair of the Hospitality Group Apprenticeship Scheme in Tasmania. Geoff has been a voluntary business mentor for 30 years. He has an MBA, is a Certified Practicing Marketer and holds a Diploma of Advertising.
Mr Michal Frydrych, Treasurer, Deputy Chair
Michal (pronounced Michael) brings vast business strategy and development experience to the Board having been involved in project management, strategic planning, marketing, and operational management roles at a senior executive level. Michal is now a practising farmer at Springfield Deer Farm in Mole Creek, quickly getting acquainted with manual skills but wanting to keep his business skills active. Michal recently stated “As you see per my attached CV I have spent the last twenty year in international logistic business mostly at CEO or Member of the Board level. Whilst I am looking forward to the farm life I would like to get involved in other activities where my experience would be of benefit to the community”.
Michal’s CV reads like a travel log with various CEO and Technical positions with companies such as Port Vladivostok, P & O Ports Russia, South African Stevedores and Esperance Ports Sea and Land Australia.
Mr Keith Rice
Keith has spent the last 31 years representing the interests of farmers in his dual role as Chief Executive, Primary Employers Tasmania and Chief Executive, Poppy Growers Tasmania. The knowledge gained over that time has been particularly insightful as to the stresses and strains placed on rural industry employers, their families and their staff. Keith has also represented Tasmanian poppy growers at all levels of governance and industry - state, national and international. Keith is a Director of the Tasmanian Agricultural Productivity Group and continues an active involvement on a part time basis with Poppy Growers Tasmania..
Mr Bernie Harrington – Immediate Past Chair
Bernie retired from his position with Centrelink after 36 years as State Retirement & Rural Manager with experience on a State and National Administrative level. He joined the Board in 1993, and has been on Executive for thirteen years. Bernie was invited to remain on the Board in his own right and elected Chairman in September 2003. He stepped down as Chair in September 2009.
Mr Tony Barker
Tony is a graduate of Lincoln University NZ with a Diploma in Agriculture and Diploma of Farm Management, a 2006 Nuffield Farming Scholar, a Trainer of Neuro Linguistic Programming and TimeLine Therapy, and a Master Practitioner of NLP Coaching and Hypnosis. For 2012 he has been travelling all over Australia with the Australian Year of the Farmer Roadshow. He has held many roles in agriculture including DairyTas Board Chair 1999 to 2004 and Nuffield Australia Tasmania Branch Chair 2009 to 2011. After many years of dairy farming, with both cow and goat enterprises at South Riana, Tony now farms a grazing property with mostly beef cattle and a few sheep. He also runs a coaching and training business called Moving Mind Mountains.
Prof. Paula Swatman
Paula brings 25 years of successful academic teaching, research and supervision experience as a Professor of Information Systems to the Board and is an internationally-recognised expert in eCommerce/eBusiness and social networking. She has wide experience of government boards and advisory committees since 1991 and currently chairs the Swinburne University Human Research Ethics Committee, in addition to active community service in the Huon Valley. In her spare time, Paula and her husband Professor Paul Swatman run a small Santa Gertrudis stud.
Belinda Hazell (AdvDipHort. DipOHS. GradCert Mgt. Cert IVTAA)
Chances are that Belinda has worked with clients that are delivering goods and services you are experiencing right now. Belinda brings over 25 years' experience across a range of clients and industries. Directly involved in family business, Belinda's skills span businesses in a multitude of sectors. Belinda's leadership is demonstrated through her active participation at executive level on national/state boards and committees. She is the current Board Chair of Freshcare Limited , Director of the Fresh Produce Safety Centre and Acting Chair of Tasmanian women in agriculture.
Rural Youth Organisation of Tas Inc.
Rural Youth is an Associate Director of the Board. Rural Youth members originated the financial counselling service in 1986 and to this day provide financial and in kind support to assist the valuable work of Rural Business Tasmania in the community. The position is currently held by Karen Robinson, Chief Executive Officer, Rural Youth Organisation of Tas Inc.