Our Board 

The activities of the cluster are overseen by a Board, which comprises the following individuals. All board members are appointed for a two year term and have specific expertise that they bring to the cluster. All board positions are honorary.

Sally Baldwin (Picnic Point Farm) - Secretary

Kane Busch (Busch Organics) 

Damien Ganon (The Tinamba Hotel)

Denis Gerrard (Patties Foods)  - Deputy Chairman

Peter Hahnemann (Forge Creek Free Range)

Louise Pavihi (OneHarvest)

Bruce Savage (Brentcorp Distributors)

Neil Stringer (Forge Creek Lamb) - Chairman


Alison Buxton (Independent Board Member)

Tony Callaghan (Independent Board Member) - Treasurer

Ian Locke (Independent Board Member)

Jeanette Severs (Independent Board Member)


Tim McAuliffe (Regional Development Victoria) [Ex-officio]

Tim Ellis (East Gippsland Shire Council) [Ex-officio]

Sharyn Bolitho (Wellington Shire Council) [Ex-officio]

In addition we have a number of working groups which oversee our projects. These generally exist for the life of a project.



Dr Nicola Watts is our Executive Officer.
Nicola has responsibility for the project activities of the East Gippsland Food Cluster.

Nicola is a passionate East Gippslander who has extensive international and national experience as a senior manager, project manager, consultant, and board member in the sectors of Agrifood, Telecommunications, Natural Resource Management and Education.

Ms Shayne Hyman is our Industry Development Officer (for Gippsland’s vegetable industry).
Shayne is engaged in capacity building for the region’s vegetable industry.

Born in East Gippsland, Shayne returned to the region in 2011 and has been applying her considerable skills, knowledge and experience to develop ideas, people, business and organisations.

Ms Julie Tuhi is our Gippsland Regional Agrifood Programme Manager.

Julie has extensive experience in business finance, management and HR in the private sector, hospitality and education, having worked in Australia and Asia.

Julie has strong family ties in East Gippsland and returned to live in the region 4 years ago, working in the employment services sector. She is very community minded and enjoys applying her skills and experience to support regional businesses, as well as deliver positive social outcomes.


*From time to time the East Gippsland Food Cluster may engage contractors or consultants to support our projects*


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