Sugar Research Australia (SRA) has announced the appointment of two new Board members and the re-election of two existing Directors at its Annual General Meeting (AGM) today in Brisbane.
Mr Peter Russo and Mr Sam Bonanno join the Board alongside existing Directors Dr Ron Swindells (Chairman), Mr Steve Guazzo, Dr Helen Garnett, Ms Lindy Hyam, and Dr Guy Roth.
Dr Ron Swindells and Dr Guy Roth were re-elected to the Board at the AGM.
The Board recommendations were made by an independent Director Selection Committee (DSC), which was led by Chair Ms Kathryn Adams and included sugarcane milling representatives Mr John Pratt (Wilmar Sugar) and Mr Stewart Norton (MSF Sugar), and sugarcane growing representatives Mr Paul Schembri and Mr Allan Dingle. The recommendations of the DSC were accepted by SRA Members at the SRA AGM.
New Director Mr Peter Russo has over 40 years of experience in sugarcane growing and milling.
Working in a farming partnership with his two sons in the Childers region, he is knowledgeable in all aspects of sugarcane farming and is particularly passionate about the adoption of innovative practices ranging from irrigation to land management to harvesting. He is Chairman of the Board of the Isis Central Sugar Mill and has served on the Board since 1990.
New Director Mr Sam Bonanno is an independent management consultant with more than 35 years’ experience in ports, logistics, infrastructure and mining operations in Australia and overseas. His experience has encompassed strategic planning and implementation, commercial negotiations, business planning, operations management, asset management, project management, materials processing and bulk supply chain management.
SRA Chairman Dr Ron Swindells welcomed Mr Russo and Mr Bonanno to the Board.
“Both of our new Directors bring specific and valuable expertise to the Board and they will assist SRA to continue to deliver productivity, profitability and sustainability outcomes for growers and millers,” Dr Swindells said.
He also thanked outgoing Directors Dr Ian Johnsson and Mr Ian Sampson.
“Dr Johnsson has been on the SRA Board since the formation of the company and brought considerable expertise in research management to help SRA successfully establish during its formation in 2013. He was a member of the SRA Research Funding Panel (RFP) for three years, and provided a valuable role in helping SRA invest in high impact activities for the industry. He has also served on the SRA Audit and Risk Committee,” Dr Swindells said.
“Mr Sampson has been on the Board since 2015 and also made a strong contribution to SRA, particularly around strategic planning and driving safety culture, through his experience in senior management positions, leadership, and the sugar industry. I also thank Ian for his contribution as Chairman of the SRA Audit and Risk Committee.”