Andrew is a small enterprise Director and family enterprise specialist with substantial experience as a successful SME owner, manager and Director for more than 25 years.
Over that period he has gained in depth knowledge to specialize in entrepreneurship, e-commerce, agribusiness, not-for-profit, service sectors and industry to fulfil governance, finance, strategy development, marketing, succession and management.
The eldest son of a third generation agribusiness family based in Forbes, NSW, he completed higher education at Hurlstone Agricultural High School, going on to attain a Bachelor of Applied Science in Environmental Science from Charles Sturt University.
Being involved in the family business Engsta Holdings from university days, the entity has evolved to have primary operations and management transitioned to Andrew and his brothers; together the family operate with a Board of Directors and Family Council. Early succession planning provided for their sister to exit the business and for their parents to retire from daily involvement.
In 2004 Andrew and a business partner family established another entity based in Sydney. As an executive Director, he was fundamental in the business of importing along with the operations of seven e-commerce stores with strategic partnerships in Australia and New Zealand. In January 2018 a successful succession process completed the sale of his shareholding.
Andrew has also managed the delivery of a Federal Government new business program for a public benevolent institution alongside his consulting and family business operations.
Andrew has an ESTJ Personality – “The Executive”.
His Kolbe A™ Index strengths are:
- 7 – Strategize gathering and sharing information
- 6 – Maintain organization
- 4 – Modify risk and uncertainty
- 3 – Envision space & tangibles
Philip Bruem AM
Philip has pursued a lifetime interest in the rural sector through Agribusiness and associated activities. He has served as President of the NSW Branch of the Holstein Association of Australia and a delegate to Federal Council as well as a member of its Judging Panel.
As a Councillor of the RAS of NSW and Chairman of its Cattle Committee, Philip also became involved with the Royal Agricultural Society of the Commonwealth of which he was made an Honorary Fellow in recognition of his contribution , particularly for encouragement relating to what is now referred to as The Next Generation Group. Philip was also Chairman of the planning committee for the Commonwealth Conference held at Albury.
Philip was a Director of Dairy Farmers Co-operative for 18 years serving as Deputy Chairman for 10 years (DF’s had an independent, non farmer Chairman) until his retirement from the Board in 2002. Whilst a Director Philip was particularly committed to farm development playing a major role in introducing and persuading farmers for the need to grow their business, to adopt innovative practices and to initiate succession planning.
During much of the period Philip served on the Dairy Farmers Board, he also served 16 years as an Executive Member of the Dairy Research Foundation, University of Sydney.
Philip was foundation Chairman of NSW Co-operative Dairy Research Centre.
In 2002 Philip was inducted into the Australasian Agribusiness Co-operatives Hall of Honour at Monash University.
Philip was co-founder and Chairman of Australian Year of the Farmer 2012.
In 2010 Philip was awarded an AM in the Australia Day Honours for service to the dairy industry, particularly through the implementation and promotion of advanced technology and to the community.
B.A (Psychology & English)
As a rural woman (wife, mother, daughter-in-law), teacher and wellbeing coach, Natalie brings her hands on experience of all things that influence the lives of families to the table. Born and raised in South Africa, Natalie obtained her Bachelors degree at the University of Witwatersrand.
She left South Africa having met and married an Australian farmer based in Forbes, NSW. Here she was able to see first hand the issues that affect families through her employment at Centacare where she worked in a community development and counselling role, and furthermore, in her capacity as a yoga teacher. A move to Narrabri to be closer to the family farming business saw Natalie expand her interests to teach communication skills and conflict management at TAFE.
In addition to her work within the community, being married into a agribusiness family has given Natalie greater insight into the importance communication plays in business issues such as isolation, stress, financial burdens, lack of support and services, succession processes and depression.
It is this experience which has motivated Natalie to share her expertise, coaching business stakeholders in effective and positive communication.