Les Williams – Chairman
Non-Executive Director since 14 November 2013
Chairman since 23 November 2016
Les Williams is a third generation Wamuran pineapple grower. He was a director of Elimbah Co-operative for 20 years finishing in 2015. In 2007 he took on the role of Pineapple Growers Advancement Group (PGAG) Research and Development Representative.
PGAG has been integral in the development of the pineapple industry. As part of his PGAG role, Les helped develop the Pineapple Industry strategic Plan and the pineapple levy. He was voted the Pineapple Grower of the Year by the industry in 2012. Les completed the Building Rural Leader’s program in 2007 and the Next Generation Leadership program in 2013.
Mr Williams is a Director of the Queensland Farmers’ Federation. He is the Chairman of Queensland Horticultural Council and a member of Queensland Farmers’ Federation Policy Council. He is also a member of the Finance and Audit sub-committee.
Derek Lightfoot – Vice Chairman
Non-Executive Director since 14 November 2013
Vice-Chairman since 14 November 2013
Derek Lightfoot is the Managing Director of Tropical Pines Pty Ltd and has a keen interest in the welfare, growth and profitability of all grower enterprises across the industry.
Mr Lightfoot has a strong domestic and international background in business management, finance and risk management having held senior positions with such organisations as KPMG, Bank of Queensland (BOQ), Brisbane City Council, and The Rock Building Society.
Derek is a member of the Biosecurity Queensland Ministerial Advisory Committee. He is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, the Institute of Chartered Accountants, the Australian Institute of Management and the Financial Services Institute of Australasia. Derek holds a Bachelor of Commerce.
He is the Chair of the Finance and Audit sub-committee.
David Thomson – CEO
David Thomson brings a wealth of experience to his role as CEO of Growcom, including 34 years in senior roles across the private and public sectors.
During his career, David has worked in manufacturing, distribution, logistics and tourism. He brings to Growcom knowledge in finance, marketing and sales.
Whilst he doesn’t have a background in horticulture, David believes that there are a set of consistent management principles that are equally applicable at Growcom. These include respect for others and the need to earn their respect, clear, open and empathetic communications and continuous improvement in everything we do.
Keen to build on nearly 100 years of representing Queensland growers, David is committed to working with all levels of government to ensure that the policy settings are right to enable Queensland growers to reach their potential and continue Growcom’s reputation as an apolitical advocate for evidence based policy.
Most importantly, he is focused on members and what is important to them.
David is enthusiastic about working with the Growcom team to ensure the long-term sustainability of the horticultural sector in Queensland.
Appointed as Director at AGM on 11 November 2015
Sharron Windolf plays an integral role in the management and success of Windolf Farms in partnership with husband and dedicated vegetable farmer, Paul, and other family members.
Windolf Farms produces lettuce, broccoli, parsnips, washed potatoes, pumpkins and watermelons for supermarkets, local and overseas markets.
Sharron has lived in farming areas of South east Queensland for most of her life and became involved in production horticulture after marrying Paul. They have four children.
She has a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Southern Queensland and is Treasurer of the Lockyer Valley Growers Association.
She was awarded the Ausveg Woman in Horticulture Award in 2016 and is a member of the Finance and Audit sub-committee.
Non-executive Director since 14 November 2013
Colin Jeacocke is a mango and dragon fruit grower at Gin Gin with extensive experience in fruit and vegetable production. He has also travelled widely and has been involved in international research and marketing.
Col has been an active member for many years contributing to a number of local and regional commodity associations and grower groups, including being a past member of the Queensland Fruit & Vegetable Growers and Bundaberg Fruit & Vegetable Growers Boards. He has also been the past Chairman of the Queensland Mango Committee and Gin Gin Fruit and Vegetables Association.
Appointed Casual Director 15 September 2016
Non-Executive Director since 23 November 2016
Judy Shepherd is a Citrus Orchardist in Gayndah. She operates three Mandarin orchards with her husband and son for the Australian Domestic markets and export markets throughout the world.
Judy’s focus is on the strategic operational direction of the enterprise with an emphasis on emerging Asian Markets and establishing strong relationships with export customers. Through her role as Secretary of the Gayndah & District Fruitgrowers Association, she has worked locally in the industry for many years to ensure growers have access to best practice models and support in WHS, HR and IR processes and compliance.
She has a Bachelor of IT, Computer Software Engineering, and a Diploma of Agribusiness. She was an enthusiastic participant in the Growcom Women in Horticulture Program and received a bursary in 2012 to pursue further Professional Development.
Judy is a member of the Queensland Horticultural Council. She is also the Manager of a successful Regional Disability Employment site and works in this role as an advocate for people with a disability in their employment and training goals throughout the North Burnett Region.
Appointed to fill Casual Vacancy created by resignation of Matt Hood on 20 November 2015
Non-Executive Director since 23 November 2016
Joe is Chairman of the Mareeba District Fruit & Vegetable Growers Association and a mango grower. Joe has many years of experience in business and the horticulture industry, as well as wider community involvement across North Queensland.
He has been Chairman of the Mareeba District Fruit & Vegetable Growers Association since 1995 and in 1997 he was appointed by the Queensland Government to the Queensland Horticultural Institute Board in the Department of Primary Industries. He was a Mareeba Shire Councillor from 2000 until 2008 and served as the Chair of the Mareeba Shire Council Regional Art Development Fund. He has been a Board member of the Cairns Region Economic Development Corporation for a number of years.
As a Director of the Mareeba Regional Development Organisation (MRDO), he worked with the Board to develop the organisation into a Tableland-wide concern. This subsequently evolved into the Tableland Future Corporation and Joe continues to serve as a Director on the Board.
Joe also helped in the formation of the Australian Mango Industry Association and went on to serve as Chairman. He is a dedicated and experienced farmer and proprietor of the family farming business, A Moro & Son. He has grown a wide variety of crops over the years including pumpkins, zucchini, cucumbers, capsicums, tomatoes, papaws, watermelons, citrus and tobacco, but Joe now solely grows mangoes.
Non-Executive Director since 11 November 2015
Belinda Adams was a primary school teacher for 10 years before joining the family farming business, Coastal Hydroponics, on the Gold Coast. The business supplies herbs and packaged leaf salads to Coles. Belinda entered the business to take over the Quality Assurance program and was then promoted to the Production Manager’s role.
She has been the Queensland representative on the board of EnviroVeg, a program dedicated to creating a profitable vegetable industry based on environmentally sustainable production available through Ausveg. Along with being the current Deputy Chair of Ausveg, she is also a Hort Innovation consumer alignment team member and an advisor to Vegpro – an industry driven professional training package.
She participated in Growcom’s young growers leadership program ‘Next Gen’ in 2011 and has also taken part in professional development training programs for Quality Assurance. She has been keenly involved in Growcom’s Women in Horticulture program and was awarded a bursary for professional development within the industry in 2012.
She was awarded Ausveg Horticultural Woman of the Year in 2013 and Grower of the Year in 2014.
Queensland Horticulture Council meets
The Queensland Horticulture Council (QHC) is now in its third year and going strong with new representatives from Stanthorpe who are enthusiastic about representing their area. Blueberry producer and Bundaberg Fruit and Vegetable Growers Chair Alan Mahoney has also taken over the position of QHC Chair from Les Williams.
The council also comprises the following members:
- Anthony Staatz –Lockyer Valley Growers Inc. and vegetable grower
- Judy Shepherd – Gayndah Fruitgrowers Association Secretary and citrus grower
- Joe Moro – Mareeba District Growers Association Chair and mango grower.
- Laurie Land – Bowen Gumlu Growers Association representative and vegetable grower
If you would like to provide input on the QHC’s policy deliberations please get in touch with Growcom’s Chief Advocate, Rachel Mackenzie, who co-ordinates the meetings on email firstname.lastname@example.org