Ross Anderson – Chairman
Ross joined the Hico board in August 2016. Ross started his career as a carpenter working both interstate and overseas before moving back to the family farm in Denison over 10 years ago. Ross share farms with his parents Graeme and Chris and is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the farm.
Ross bring a fresh approach to the Hico board having spent time out of the industry before returning to the home farm. Ross has gained recent experience participating in Victorian Government agriculture programs and the Murray Goulburn Supplier Consultative Committee and sits as a Director on the GippsDairy Board.
Andrew Verboon – Deputy Chairman
Andrew joined the board as an independent director in August 2014 and was elected as a director in August 2016. He comes from the Korumburra region and represents our younger generation of shareholders. Both his parents held director positions on co-operatives and his father, Bill Verboon, is a former director of the dairy milk processor Murray Goulburn and his late mother Leanne was a former director at Hico.
Andrew and his wife Rebecca have two young children and have farmed for over ten years operating a 350 cow farm in Ruby near Leongatha South, with plans to increase their herd size in the near future.
Stewart McRae – Director
Stewart joined the Hico board in January 2011, being the former General Manager of the Maffra and Gippsland Herd Improvement Co-operatives for 15 years, Stewart resigned in 2006 to take on a full time family farming opportunity. Since leaving the industry in 2006 Stewart has kept active in a large community Sports Club in Sale, as director for ten years also on the Board of ADHIS for five years.
Stewart, wife Nita and their five children live at Nambrok in Gippsland operating three dairy farms, 600 cow herd at Nambrok, 200 cow herd in Sale and a 400 cow herd at Fulham.
Gary Macfarlane – Independent Director
In August 2014, Gary joined the Hico board as an independent director, bringing with him a wealth of experience in agribusiness consultancy in the areas of strategic review & analysis, business development and governance. He has a Master of Administration and is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Gary operates a successful business consultancy across a broad range of industries and has previously held senior executive positions in the wool and dairy agriculture industries. Gary lives in Melbourne but travels extensively throughout rural Australia and New Zealand to service clients.
Josh De Jong – Independent Director
Josh joined the Hico board in January 2016, filling a casual vacancy left by Mary Brown who retired later in 2015. Josh was then invited to join the Hico board in October 2016 as an Independent Director. Josh together with his wife Ellie and parents Jos and Winsome run a 450 cow farm at Irrewillipe East in Western Victoria. Josh has a strong passion for the dairy industry and believes strongly in the value of herd testing and artificial insemination for future growth and development of herds.
Craig Bennett – Director
Craig joined the Hico Board in October 2018. Craig and wife Sophie purchased their dairy farm located at Simpson in 2007. Craig milks 320 Holstein cows that are registered under the Dellyn stud prefix. Craig has an Advanced Diploma in Farm Business Management and has gained experience as leader of the local Coorimungle Discussion Group as well as being on a milk processors farm advisory committee. Craig was an early adopter of herd testing believing it an invaluable asset in improving your herd performance and farm profitability.
Jon Ryan – Director
Jon Ryan joined the Hico Board as an independent Director in March 2018. Jon has a Diploma of Agribusiness and grew up on a dairy farm in south western Victoria. Jon has grown his dairy business via leasing and share farming and together with his wife Lauren purchased their own farm in 2015. Jon, Lauren and their daughters Lucy and Amelia farm 360 cows in the Macalister irrigation district of Gippsland.