Cotton LEADS

Potential game-changers selected for cotton industry’s leadership program
March 10, 2022

Meet the Australian cotton industry's next generation of leaders

Australia’s cotton industry has selected 15 of the country’s most outstanding, up and coming stakeholders for its premier entry-level leadership program.

From New South Wales, Queensland and the ACT, eight women and seven men will participate in the 2022 Australian Future Cotton Leaders Program, with support from Cotton Australia and the Cotton Research and Development Corporation.

Participant’s roles in the cotton industry vary from farmers to fashion designers, researchers, biosecurity officers and marketers.

The program aims to develop leadership, knowledge, skills and experience so that the participants in turn can play key roles in further developing the industry.

Cotton Australia Chief Executive Officer Adam Kay said the calibre of applicants highlighted the role Australia had in leading the world in improving cotton quality and environmental stewardship.

“I am excited about the 2022 Future Cotton Leaders Program because of the potential for real benefit to the participants and industry as a whole. They have some game-changing ideas and a passion for improving sustainability, quality and yield,” Mr Kay said.

Mr Kay said the development of Australia’s future cotton leaders was essential as the industry looked to further improve water and pesticide efficiencies and produce a product that our customers want.

“The program is professionally delivered, empowering participants to give as much as they take and encourage fresh thinking and innovation from our emerging cotton decision-makers,” he said.

CRDC Executive Director Dr Ian Taylor said participants represented the diversity of the cotton industry and its supply chain.

“In their day-to-day roles these emerging leaders are already tackling big issues like cotton’s heat and drought tolerance, water use efficiency, ginning optimisation and showcasing cotton as a renewable resource for emerging designers,” Dr Taylor said.

“Previous graduates have been drivers of change and we have confidence that the 2022 participants will continue that tradition.”

The program will feature face-to-face forums, interactive online discussions, one-on-one coaching and integration with industry activities.

Participants also take on a project related to their area of interest, with the program concluding at the Australian Cotton Conference in August 2022.

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