Executive

CWFS Executive Committee

Josh Gordon

Chairman

Josh has worked with MSM Milling since 2021and prior to this, with the NSW Department of Primary Industries since 2015. He spent seven years with Cargill and AWB Limited in management and commodity marketing roles. As well as nine years with NSW DPI in agronomic research and industry development, including Executive Officer of the Durum Industry Association. Josh has a Degree in Agricultural Science and holds the Australian Financial Markets Association (AFMA) accreditation. 

josh.gordon@live.com.au
0459 762 308

Guy Webb

Guy Webb

Vice Chairman

Guy farmed northwest of Condo along the Boona range for the first 10 yrs of his ag career before pursuing an agronomy career in different regions around Australia, settling in Forbes for the last 20 years. Throughout his career, he has focused on methods to increase soil carbon in cropping & grazing systems.  

Through his passion for soil carbon & agriculture, Guy founded & now chairs the not-for-profit research institute SoilCQuest 2031 based in Forbes, is vice chair at CWFS, and is Co-Founder & Global Agronomic Lead for Loam Bio, a technology and carbon project development company. Guy’s aim is to see growing soil carbon become part of the DNA of global agriculture. 

Founder, Chair, Director
SoilCQuest 2031 
0422 806 325

guy@soilcquest.org.au
www.soilcquest.org.au

Graham McDonald

Graham McDonald

Treasurer

Graham McDonald spent his childhood on a farm near Lake Cargelligo. He left school in 1970 in time for the large machinery boom of the 70s. Graham has been involved in CWFS since its inception in 1998, including a term as Chairman. Now a partner in a mixed farming operation northwest of Condobolin along with his brother David and son James running a merino flock joined to Merino rams and another joined to White Suffolk rams, along with cropping.

Graham’s main interest in being involved in CWFS is to attract relevant research to the western cropping areas and explore new technology/crops to improve profitability. How we adapt to the challenges of the next 10 years will be crucial.

scrublands@bigpond.com
0428 965 306 

Jeff Bennett

Secretary

Jeff Bennett farms west of Condobolin at Kiacatoo with his wife Lisa and 3 children. Jeff has been continuous cropping for the last 20 years growing cereal grains, canola, and chickpeas with an increasing interest to incorporating livestock into his business. With a focus to compliment his cropping program and to establishing perennial pastures to utilise less efficient land for annual cropping. 

Jeff is a strong believer that research underpins how farmers can respond to changes outside their control that affect farm performance and is enthused by local practice change, innovation of technologies, growth of enterprises, and weather patterns in the last 20 -30 years. The local relevant research and extension activities that Central West Farming Systems can provide are a driver for Jeff’s involvement with the farming systems group.

jbennett4@bigpond.com
0428 965 337

Emma Ayliffe

Emma Ayliffe

Committee member

Emma and her partner Craig run a mixed farming business between Lake Cargelligo and Tullibigeal producing first cross lambs and dryland crops off their 10,000 acres. 

Emma is a principle and consultant with Summit Ag Agricultural Consulting specialising in irrigated and dryland crops, as well research into agriculture. She is very active within the wider agriculture community sitting on boards and on committees such as the GRDC update planning committee and previous Chair of the YVLT. She is the 2020-21 Australian Young Farmer of the Year, 2021 Chris Lehmann Cotton Young Achiever to name a few accolades, founder of the Yacker Social media app. 

Will Colless

Committee member

Will Colless is part of a family partnership mixed farming enterprise North of Condobolin. His enterprise consists of cropping, self-replacing dorpers, and cattle. Since coming home to the farm in 2017 Will has been involved in various committees and trials.

0428403908
will.colless@hotmail.com

Lawrence Higgins

Lawrence Higgins

Committee member

Lawrence Higgins has been on the CWFS executive since the inception of the organisation in 1998. Lawrence has been a farmer within the Merriwagga area since 1962 on a family farm as well as leased and share farmed land. The main driver for being part of Central West farming Systems has been to help conduct research that is relevant to the Merriwagga area. In 1998 the majority of the agricultural research being extended was conducted in Wagga Wagga and wasn’t relevant to the drier climate at Merriwagga.

mamariagri@gmail.com
0428 639 291

Warren Lander

Warren Lander

Committee member

Warren currently works in the role of Territory Sales Manager for AWB / Cargill, covering the Central West area and based in Forbes. Warren has an extensive background in agriculture, having been born and bred in the Grenfell district and growing up on his family’s mixed farming enterprise. After nearly 20 years of experiencing the highs and lows of family farming and exclusive cropping, Warren and his wife decided to move out of the farming business and into the agribusiness sector. Warren studied agriculture at The University of Sydney.

warren@keyagri.com.au
0428 047 111

David Taylor

David Taylor

Committee member

David is a fourth-generation central west farmer with 50 years of farming experience in the Trundle area. He is semi-retired and he and his wife operate a 1600 ha merino lamb production enterprise based on derived-native-grassland pastures near Trundle.

David holds the following academic qualifications (gained externally): Bachelor of Business (Monash), Bachelor of Arts (Griffith), Master of Rangeland Management (University of Queensland), PhD (University of New England). His other qualifications include Certificate of Agriculture (Yanco), Certificate of Sheep and Wool (NSW TAFE), Diploma of Marketing, Diploma of Marketing Research.

David’s PhD Thesis investigated the ‘Structure and function of a central west plains grazed grassland hill-slope’, and his Masters Thesis examined ‘Strategic risk management amongst farmers on the central west plains’.

David has Australian Wool Exchange acknowledgement of 50 years as a professional wool classer.

David says that the central west plains has amongst the most variable rainfall of any similar average annual rainfall zone anywhere in the world and is acknowledged to have the most variable farm income of any of ABARES farm production regions.  His particular interests are farming systems and business modeling as tools in the strategic management of risk in farming businesses on the central west plains; the role of central west plains ecology and landscape processes in designing farming systems to mitigate production risk; implications for biomass production of the interaction of rainfall characteristics and above-ground below-ground processes in ‘hard-setting-red-brown earth’ soils of the central west plains; the role of cropping in stimulating productivity of derived-native grasslands; and sheep genetics, sheep production systems, and grazing-land management.