North and Central West

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Committee Details

JoyHardie Name: Joy Hardie
Role: Coordinator & Producer
“Verastan” Muttaburra
Phone: 07 4658 7285
Joy & John live on “Verastan” 30km north-west of Muttaburra. Verastan’s claim to fame is that Queensland’s geographical centre is positioned on the property. John’s family purchased “Verastan” in the1950’s & over the years the property has remained as a family based concern with their children taking part in property activities whenever the opportunity has arisen. John & Joy run a sheep, wool & beef enterprise. During the last few years, they have moved from a strong emphasis on wool to both a meat & wool emphasis. Through genetics, they have reduced the micron while maintaining fleece weight on a plainer bodied sheep & are now actively involved in selecting for eye muscle & fat score to increase fertility & carcass weight in their merino flock. Despite the challenges of wild dogs & the vagaries of seasons they believe that the sheep industry has a very strong future.
Ben Ogg Ben Ogg
Role: Producer
‘Ayrshire’, Winton
Phone: 4657 3027
 Ben is involved in the family business located 60km north of Winton “Ayrshire Downs” which is a mixed enterprise comprising of beef cattle
and a merino sheep flock. He is also committed to improving the sheep and wool industry as a whole by addressing impacting factors with particular relevance to the central west. These include pest control, introduction of superior genetics and an increase in producer knowledge. This is to help producers better recognize opportunities and options that exist for the sheep and wool industry.
 Dave owens Name: Dave Owens
Role: Producer
“Somerset” Longreach
Phone: 0428 581 919
David grew up in the Longreach/ Muttaburra area and has always been involved in the sheep industry. After leaving school he has been able to pursue his passion for the rural industry through owning a property and also running a crutching and lamb marking contracting business. This has enabled David to get around the central west and see how people do things and also to get a good feel on what producers are trying to achieve. He truly believes there is a profitable and sustainable future in the sheep industry especially for the younger generation. Concentration on reliable and informative data is a must and is the main reason he is on board with Leading Sheep.
DavidCounsell Name: David Counsell
Role: Producer
“Dunblane” Barcaldine
Phone: 07 4651 2498
David is a member of a long term wool producing family at “Dunblane”, west of Barcaldine. He believes sheep still have an important place alongside cattle in the region and is committed to improving productivity of his Merino flock. Better fleece weights and lower micron counts are being achieved through the introduction of superior genetics.
Role: Producer
“Acacia Downs” Longreach
Phone: 07 4658 5616
David operates a sheep and cattle property with his wife Sarah Jane and three children, 100 km north of Longreach, near Muttaburra. He is keen to encourage other producers and is committed a profitable future for the sheep and wool industry industry in the central west.
GregHunt Name: Greg Hunt
Role: Australian Wool Network
Phone: 07 4658 2842
I have spent around 35 years working in the sheep and wool industry as a woolclasser, shearer and sheep and wool training. . I currently live in Longreach and have done for 22 years and present role is working for Australian Wool Network in the North Queensland sheep production area as a sheep and wool advisor and livestock salesperson.
AlisonKrieg Name: Alison Krieg
Role: Producer
“Benalla” Blackall
Phone: 07 4657 5069
Alison runs a merino sheep and beef cattle operation at “Benalla” in the Blackall district.  She completed a Certificate of Woolclassing at Warwick Tafe under the tutelage of Des Humphries and was greatly influenced by his passion for merino wool.  Alison believes that wool has a bright future but is concerned by the mounting challenges of wild dog predation and lack of young people entering the industry.
Jim King Name: Jim King
Role: Producer
“Willowen” Longreach
Phone: 07 4658 9122
Jim and Lou live on Willowen, they have 3 children all attending University; he purchased Willowen in 1988, 56km south of Longreach. Over this time he has focused his efforts on sheep production, in particular wool and runs beef cattle. Jim attended a SRS workshop in 1995 and he changed his sheep breeding practices in 2000 to align with the SRS breeding system. With the selection of bigger plain bodied rams, mulesing was ceased in 2006. Over the last 5 years he has been selecting rams with the use of ASBV’s concentrating on eye muscle depth and fat scores. For the sheep industry to go from strength to strength, Jim believes it must evolve and change with technology.
alex1compress Name: Alex Stirton
Role: Extension Officer
DAF Charleville
Phone: 07 4654 4212
Alex grew up in the South West on the family property and has since worked on many places around the South West area. He attended the University of Queensland Gatton campus and obtained a Bachelor in Agricultural Science – Rural Management. He then travelled and lived overseas for a period of time, before starting his current role. Alex’s role is as an Extension Officer for sheep based in Charleville. He joined the team in mid 2009 and is committed to improving the Qld sheep industry through the extension activities such as workshops, field days and webinars. He looks forward to getting more people involved in the future.