James (Jimmy) Robertson, NZYF Member Elected Board Member 2021

Posted by on 26 July 2021 | Comments

When it comes to success in the Food & Fibre sector this young man’s name is well known. From the day he burst onto the scene as a TeenAg (now FMG Junior Young Farmer of the Year) contestant, to becoming the youngest ever winner of the FMG Young Farmer of the Year contest, and now to his successful election on the NZYF Board, you can’t help but think this young man is just getting started.


James (Jimmy) Robertson has been a member of NZYF for just over 9 years and is currently a Technical Associate for the Managing Director of Co-operative Affairs at Fonterra. He’s a Massey University Graduate Bachelor of Agricommerce, who grew up on a dairy farm in the Waikato.


At only 24 years of age, Jimmy is motivated to help NZYF seize the massive opportunity it has to excite people about the industry and to increase the value the organisation offers its members. He acknowledges that to see the organisation not just survive but thrive, acute attention and focus needs to be applied to the membership numbers of the organisation.


“There’s so much scope to add more value back to membership and make things easier for clubs to operate. For me that’s where we can unlock a bit of value - membership grows membership.


“An active growing membership base is the lifeblood of an organisation like New Zealand Young Farmers and I want to focus on tangible outcomes that directly benefit and empower members, ensuring that the organisation continues to exist and add value to its members for the next 50 years”.


Although, in his current role he’s worked alongside the Fonterra Board, Jimmy’s always been watching the NZYF Board from a distance.


“I’ve been quite lucky with work in the past couple of years to work alongside the Fonterra Board to see how they operate and the value they can add to the Management team. So I want to throw all this experience together and leverage some of those skills for NZYF”.


Late last year Jimmy was appointed to the sub-committee for the FMG Young Farmer of the Year contest where he is in the process of leading the development of a contest strategy refresh, resetting the focus of the contest’s core purpose. Although he now has a larger role on the NZYF Board he hasn’t ruled out the possible opportunity of filling the lead role on the sub-committee, left vacant by retiring Board member Robert Barry.


Jimmy brings to the Board a range of core competencies, which include problem solving and ideation, strategy development, financial and risk management experience.


“As long as I remain motivated and have the energy to contribute I will be sitting around the board table pushing boundaries and challenging the status quo”.