Hart is proudly managed by a board of volunteers, all with a passion for broad acre agriculture.
With a deliberate mix of farmers and other professionals from across the ag industry, board members collectively provide a vast range of skills, experience and networks to the group.
We cover a broad geographical area too as our team farm and work across a large part of the Mid-North of South Australia and beyond.
Board meetings are held regularly to review and manage operations and to plan strategically for the future which means we have a clear and consistent focus; to identify the research areas that will enable growers to remain profitable and sustainable.
Successful candidates are elected at our AGM in October of each year for a three year term, at the end of which they may choose to either re-nominate or retire.
Staff employed by the group are ultimately responsible to the board.
OUR TEAM (2021/22)
Photo (L-R): Ryan Wood, Scott Weckert, James Venning, Deb Purvis, Rob Dall, Simon Honner, Matt Dare, Sandy Kimber, Josh Reichstein, Andre Sabeeney, Bek Allen, Declan Anderson, Stuart Sherriff.
Absent: Glen Wilkinson.
Keep scrolling for more information about each of our team members.
JOIN THE HART BOARD
Board member nominations are now closed.
But if volunteering on the Hart board something you'd like to consider doing, please click here to find out more.
Or give us a call, we're happy to chat any time.
Andre Sabeeney | 0418 835 599
Sandy Kimber | 0427 423 154
The next round of elections will be held at our AGM in October 2023.
Click on image (above) to enlarge.
Our board members are very approachable if there's anything you'd like to discuss (general feedback, research topic suggestions etc.), please feel free to get in touch.
Andre Sabeeney - Chairman
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Andre Sabeeney joined the Hart board in 2011 seeing it as a way to get involved with a pro-active group that could have a direct and positive impact for growers.
He is employed by Nufarm Limited as a technical lead, specialising in crop protection.
Outside of his work, Andre lives in Clare with his wife and two children and enjoys nothing better than getting outdoors for some camping and 4wd action.
Glen Wilkinson - Vice-chair, sponsorship
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Glen ‘Chip’ Wilkinson joined the Hart board in April 2020, keen to give back to the grains industry and help ensure there is a sustainable future in agriculture for his two sons.
Aside from the industry research and development outcomes of the Hart Field-Site Group, the Snowtown farmer says the social benefits of being involved in a common interest group and having the opportunity to catch up with like-minded growers is invaluable.
Chip has a particular interest in crop timing, the cyclic nature of cropping and increasing feasibility through crop rotation.
At home on the farm that he works with his wife and two young sons coming through, Chip takes responsibility for the crop planning and implementation, as well as the day to day spreading, spraying, harvesting roles as well as animal husbandry.
When he is not farming, he loves nothing better than getting out on the water for a ski, and enjoying good food and wine with family and friends.
Sandy Kimber - Executive officer
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Sandy Kimber keeps the Hart Field-Site Group running smoothly as executive officer.
She has been a board member since 2008 and wears many hats in her role and her extensive knowledge and skills are second to none.
She publishes the group’s Hart Beat newsletter, manages sponsors, members, events, extension, marketing, group functions, the website…you name it, Sandy has her finger on the pulse.
Sandy is passionate about finding ways to provide information and resources to growers to help make farming better, easier and more profitable.
Outside of her Hart work, Sandy is involved in the family farm and vineyard near Clare, taking care of finance, administration and grain sales.
She has two children and loves photography, reading, movies, socialising and enjoying some of the fabulous wine the Clare Valley has to offer.
Deb Purvis - Finance officer
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Deb Purvis joined the Hart board in April 2017, seeing it as a way to give back to the industry that has provided her a career and also as a way to share her expertise in finance at a board level.
Deb runs her own debt advisory business, Purvis AgriFinance. She is a specialist in agribusiness finance, providing debt funding solutions for financial restructuring, succession planning, refinancing and business expansion/acquisitions to farmers and rural business.
Aside from work, Deb is married with two children and enjoys travel and camping…although five star accommodation is equally appealing to her!
High on her bucket list is to walk the Larapinta Trail in the Northern Territory.
Matt Dare - Commercial crop manager
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Matt Dare joined the Hart board in 2001 and has worn many hats during his involvement including a term as chairman and a long serving representative on the sponsorship sub-committee. He has been the group’s commercial crop manager since 2014.
He joined initially to learn more about the technical side of crop production and the latest agronomy research.
In addition to his role as Hart’s commercial crop manager, Matt farms at Marola.
He has a particular interest in pulses but also innovation and improvement in agronomy and crop management, leading to increased farm productivity and profitability.
Matt is married with three children, is a die-hard Crows supporter and loves sport as an outlet outside of work including footy, tennis and cricket.
Ryan Wood - Sponsorship
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Ryan Wood is a past chairman of the Hart Field-Site Group and joined the board to combine his passion for agriculture with the opportunity to work with a group of like-minded people across a broad range of expertise.
Ryan specialises in crop protection and nutrition, working with growers across the state as a sales consultant for Agritrading. He is based in Clare and has a real interest in how all aspects of agriculture can work together.
Out of the paddock, Ryan is a husband and a dad to three young children, as well as a keen footballer, basketballer and tennis player.
Simon Honner - Board member
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Simon Honner joined the Hart board in April 2017 feeling the time was right to contribute something back to the industry rather than just being on the receiving end of Hart’s field days and information sessions.
He is a self-employed agronomist and rural business consultant based at Blyth who is passionate about mixed farming enterprises that are sustainable, regardless of seasonal conditions and situations.
Outside of work, Simon is married with four children and enjoys footy, fishing and camping, as well spending a considerable amount of ‘spare’ time tending to the Blyth football oval as curator.
Rob Dall - Board member
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Kybunga farmer Rob Dall joined the Hart board in 2019 after being inspired by his own experiences of Hart Field-Site Group's informative events over a number of years.
He was keen to help contribute to maintaining Hart's reputation as one of the best places for farmers to "learn and be informed to help keep their farms viable and profitable".
Rob farms with his father, enjoying all areas of agriculture, with a particular interest in the practical side of farming, along with innovation and agronomy.
Outside of work, Rob is married with two children and enjoys a hit of tennis and travelling.
Stuart Sherriff - Board member
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Having had a connection with the Hart Field-Site Group through his previous employment with SARDI, Stuart Sherriff missed being involved with us (totally understandable!) and sought to join the board in 2020.
Stuart, an agronomist/research agronomist with Trengove Consulting, specialises in field trial management and pH map data processing.
He has a keen focus on lentil agronomy and sandy soil amelioration, pH mapping and management including lime application and variable rate technology.
Away from work, Stuart enjoys spending time with his wife and two kids, and loves to get out camping when he can.
Josh Reichstein - Board member
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While he may live in Adelaide now, Josh is still a country boy at heart and his work as InterGrain’s national sales manager and SA Territory manager keeps his finger firmly on the farming pulse.
Joining the Hart board in 2021 has ensured he keeps those ties strong, giving him an opportunity to be more involved in the agriculture industry and work closely with growers.
Josh has an interest in cereal varieties and how they fit into grower’s programs across a range of environments and situations.
Outside of work, Josh is married with three boys – Jimmy, Roscoe and Percy – and spends his spare time chasing kids and pursuing his other passion, sport.
Scott Weckert - Board member, sponsorship
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Having seen what the Hart Field-Site Group has contributed to agriculture in his local region, Scott Weckert was keen to join the board in 2021 to ‘give something back’ and help continue the legacy.
A farmer at Blyth, Scott is passionate about growing the best crops he can in a mixed rainfall area to maximise the potential of the family property.
Scott is husband to local school teacher Kerrie, and proud dad to their four children Lenny, Harry, Bobby and Eadie.
When he is not farming or involved in family and community activities, the weather is still never far from his mind when as pursues his hobbies of fishing and flying.
James Venning - Board member
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Barunga Gap / Bute farmer James Venning joined the Hart board in 2021 seeing it as a way to challenge himself, develop his personal skills and further contribute to the farming industry.
Productivity, efficiency and cost-effectiveness are three key areas of focus for James on his own farm, where he manages two to three full-time staff.
On the home front, James is married to Lauren and they have a son, Hugh, and daughter Willa, who keep them busy, but when time permits, he also enjoys travel and following Formula One racing.
Bek Allen - Research & extension manager
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Rebekah Allen is the Hart Field-Site Group’s research and extension manager.
She has an extensive interest across all aspects of broadacre cropping with a focus on crop agronomy, disease and weed management. Rebekah has a passion for delivering information through research to assist growers improving on-farm productivity.
When she is not at work, you will find Bek looking for some outdoor adventure with her border collie Millie, hiking, having a hit of hockey, or out and about supporting the Clare Valley’s wine industry.
Declan Anderson - Regional intern
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Declan Anderson joined the Hart Field-Site Group in early 2021 as part of a two-year regional internship.
Declan grew up and has spent most of his life on a mixed sheep and cropping farm at Ouyen, Victoria.
He has a passion for agricultural soils and agronomy involved in modern farming systems and has always been keen to look at ways to improve the health and productivity of soils.
Declan is also interested in the best practice and improved agronomic solutions for sustainable, high productivity systems.
Now based in the Clare Valley, when he is out of the paddock, Declan is a keen footballer, cricketer and water skier.
Sandy Kimber - Executive officer
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See above for profile.
Gabrielle Hall - Hart media
Gabrielle Hall has been helping get the Hart message out since 2010 as the group’s media and public relations consultant.
Having worked in agricultural and regional print and broadcast media for more than 20 years, Gabrielle helps promote Hart’s major events by writing and distributing news articles and photos through her extensive network of media contacts.
Having grown up on a farm at Jamestown, she is passionate about helping deliver the stories of rural and regional Australia to the wider community and loves nothing better than getting out, getting her boots dirty and chatting to farmers to help get the Hart story out there.
Based in Clare, Gabrielle is mum to three sports mad boys, a wife, a freelance journalist/public relations consultant and spends plenty of time on the sidelines at the local footy and cricket!