Zanda McDonald Award names finalists

Three future leaders in ag from NZ and three from Australia chosen.

Six finalists have been chosen for the 2024 Zanda McDonald Award, which recognises and nurtures excellence in agriculture.

The award, now entering its 10th year, fosters future leaders in agriculture, providing opportunities for growth, mentorship, and education.

The finalists, three from each side of the Tasman, hail from diverse backgrounds.

The New Zealand finalists are Carla Muller, 31, agricultural economist and principal consultant for Perrin Ag and former president of NZIPIM, based in Whakatane; Nancy Crawshaw, 27, extension officer for Angus Australia and part of the GenAngus Future Leaders Program cohort in 2022, based in Hawke’s Bay; and Tim Dangen, 31, a beef farmer in Muriwai, West Auckland, and 2022 recipient of the FMG Young Farmer of the Year Award.

The Australian finalists are Caitlin McConnel, 33, an agribusiness lawyer at Clayton Utz, chair of the Future Farmer Network and farmer based in Southeast Queensland; Nick Dunsdon, 33, manager of Coban Pastoral Co and Rural Property Agent at GDL based in Cunnamulla, southwest Queensland; and Tessa Chartres, 32, general manager business development for Murray Irrigation Ltd and chair of the Southwest Music Regional Conservatorium, based in Deniliquin, New South Wales.

Finalists become part of the award alumni and receive ongoing access to mentoring, networking opportunities and support.

The six will head to Queenstown in March 2024 for the award’s annual Impact Summit, where an Australian and a NZ winner will be crowned at an event with industry leaders and award partners.

The winners receive a personal development package, including a fully personalised mentoring trip in both countries, $10,000 worth of tailored education or further training, media coaching and ongoing networking opportunities.


First published by Farmers Weekly. Click here to read the full article.