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CMA welcomes new board member

13 Nov 2019

North Central Catchment Management Authority (CMA) Chair Julie Miller Markoff has welcomed Mary Bignell to the board.

Water Minister Lisa Neville appointed Ms Bignell after she was recommended and assessed by an independent panel.

Ms Miller Markoff said Ms Bignell’s farming experience and working in natural resource management was a perfect fit for the organisation.

“Mary is a partner in a family broadacre cropping business in the Wimmera and has been a Non-Executive Director of Grampians Wimmera Mallee Water from 2010 to 2019, with roles including Deputy Chairperson, Chairperson Water Resources and Chairperson Environment and Works,” she said.

“She has experience working in natural resource management, emergency management, agribusiness, community development and primary production.

“Mary brings experience with water governance, primary production and rural community building initiatives.”

Ms Bignell, whose first board meeting was earlier this month, began her environmental work with landcare.

She worked with irrigators and dryland farmers to build a community of practice in natural resource management in Northern Victoria and used social research and strategic planning skills to build that community’s skills and capacity to bring about long-term change.

Ms Bignell has also worked with fire-affected communities to develop and implement community building and resilience programs.

Charlie Gillingham, Richard Carter and Graham Atkinson were reappointed to the board.

Ms Miller Markoff thanked outgoing board member Julie Slater for her contribution to the organisation and the community.

“Julie is an experienced Director, who is innovative and strategic, with deep understanding of the expectations of government,” she said.

“Julie has influenced and advocated for strong links to communities with great passion and skill. She is also innovative in thinking about how organisations can create value.

“She is a regional level thinker, and problem solver, and understands agriculture practice both as a farmer in the dryland districts and the differing practices in other parts of the region.

“She is extremely well connected into local communities and understands their leadership, needs and challenges.

“She will certainly me missed and I thank her for all she has done for the CMA and local communities.”