Program fast forwards cotton's future leaders (20 April 2018)

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Applications for the 2018 Australian Future Cotton Leaders Program have opened. The program, a joint initiative of Cotton Australia and CRDC, is in its sixth year. It seeks to identify potential industry leaders and provide them with the skill development of a project goal. Applications will be accepted from aspiring leaders from across the cotton supply chain through to Friday, 4 May 2018.

FDuring the program, participants will meet for two face-to-face forums, develop industry partnerships and attend cotton industry activities to further develop their leadership skills and networks. The program commences in May 2018 and concludes in October 2018.

Future Cotton Leaders Program Director, Paul Sloman, says the program’s key purpose is to prepare participants for future leadership roles in the cotton industry.

“The program has proven to be a great success in supporting leadership succession plans,” he says. “Already we have seen graduates step up to new roles and many have represented the cotton industry on regional, state, national and international levels.”

Aaron Kiely – a cotton grower from Emerald, Queensland who was part of the last intake - attributes the program with establishing his leadership vision and direction in the industry.

“The program challenged and inspired me to really to question what my role was in the industry and how I could make a difference. I am more confident in myself and my business and I have stepped up to take on the President’s role for the Central Highlands Cotton Growers’ and Irrigators Association,” Mr Kiely says.

Katie Broughton, a researcher with CSIRO in Narrabri, encourages others who wish to further develop their industry and leadership skills to get on board with the 2018 program.

“The interaction with the other program participants gave me the opportunity to learn about others and their roles from across the whole cotton industry, it’s a great opportunity,” Ms Broughton says.

The 2018 program will accept up to 15 people from across the cotton industry supply chain.

Applicants are encouraged to read the information flyer before submitting an application form. Any queries should be directed to Paul Sloman on 0448 094 883 or email