Bexx Brown and Alastair Neville step down from Contest Board

Posted by on 7 July 2020 | Comments

NZ Young Farmers regrets to announce Contest Board Chair Bexx Brown and Contest Representative Alistair Neville have finished their terms on the Contest Board and will be hanging up their hats to retire.

NZYF Board Chair Ash-Leigh Campbell says the pair have both put in an extraordinary amount of time, work and dedication to FMG Young Farmer of the Year contest and the NZYF organisation as a whole.  

“We wish them all the best for their future endeavours and can’t thank them enough for their four years of service to the organisation and everything they have contributed over their time,” she says.

Bexx has been involved with NZYF for 15 years and has spent four years on the Contest Board, serving two of those as Chair.

She’s stepping away to spend more time with her family and give her children the opportunity to come up through the FMG Junior Young Farmer of the Year contest.

“I’ve really enjoyed the opportunities I’ve had being part of the organisation and board, growing not only in myself, but also my leadership skills and having the chance to build industry relationships and develop networks,” she says.

“I have such a passion for the contest and I’m so proud that I’ve been able to give back, especially coming from being an FMG Young Farmer of the Year contestant, moving to a contest convener, to a member of the board and then Chair of the board. It really highlights the massive leadership opportunities available within the organisation.”

“Although I’m really sad to be stepping down, I want other members to be able to have the opportunities I’ve had on the Board, as well as the invaluable experiences they will gain.”

Bexx is extremely proud of the strategies the Board has implemented and the work they’ve all put in to help shift the direction and grow the contest over the last four years.

Alastair Neville is standing down after four years on the Contest Board to spend more time concentrating on his farming business and to also open up the leadership pathway for other members.

He’s been involved with NZYF since 2008, after joining the Massey University Club.

Since then he’s been a convener for all three tiers of contest (district finals, regional finals and grand final), been involved in Club committee roles, served as Reporoa Club Chair and sat on the regional executive committee as vice chair for two years.

“I’m a prime example of someone who has started off as a grassroots member and put my hand up for a simple committee role and never stopped. There’s a continuous pathway of opportunities to step up and learn and to really leverage the knowledge and skills of people through the networks you build and the friends you make,” he says.

“For the likes of myself who wanted to be a Young Farmer of the Year Grand Finalist since a little kid but taking a different approach to the organisation side of the contest, has been really satisfying and just as fulfilling.”

Alastair says it’s been amazing to be on the Board and also be part of the change in the contest’s strategy.

“In the last four years, I’ve been really privileged to have implemented and seen the new contest strategy come into place after the 50th Anniversary. It was such a turning point for the contest and better reflects where the industry is headed with a younger cohort of really diverse competitors, from all walks of life. To see those Grand Finalists come through, particularly this year, is a true reflection of the new strategy and the people who are out there in the industry right now.”

Although he’s sad to be stepping down after such a long involvement with Contest and the NZYF organisation, he says he’s looking forward to freeing up a bit of time on his hands.

“It’s time to give someone else the opportunity to be part of the contest journey and bring in some fresh ideas,” he says.

NZ Young Farmers will soon be announcing a revised structure for governance of the FMG Young Farmer of the Year Contest.