New Appointment to AgFrontier Project Team to Grow Central Queensland Innovation Ecosystem
October 26, 2020
There’s now another expert pair of hands on deck to deliver the next phase of a visionary agtech program in the Central Highlands. Cassie Turner is the new Agtech Community Officer for AgFrontier’s Regional Agtech Catalyst, an initiative of the Central Highlands Development Corporation (CHDC). She will work with Agtech Program Manager Sonya Comiskey to deliver the program, which follows on from the successful AgFrontier Regional Agtech Incubator.
Ms Turner has significant experience as an agronomist with CQ Ag Services in Emerald and tertiary qualifications in agriculture and business. “Cassie’s expertise and experience make her a great match for the role,” Ms Comiskey says. “It’s also fantastic to have someone on board who’s a brilliant communicator and organiser, strongly community-minded, and passionate about the Central Highlands and our agriculture industry.”
The role ticks all the right boxes for Ms Turner. “Agriculture technology is undergoing monumental growth in Australia so I’m really looking forward to playing a role in supporting the Central Highlands’ efforts to become a solid player in that space,” she says. “AgFrontier is a special program because it’s giving startups and entrepreneurs in regional and rural areas access to the same tools, knowledge and connections as those in the city.”
AgFrontier Regional Agtech Catalyst is a three-year program which aims to create a world-leading ag and food tech community in Central Queensland. Its first project is next month’s Agtech Innovation Mission to Brisbane, supported by the Local Buying Foundation. It will involve a select group of start-ups and agricultural entrepreneurs from across Central Queensland and alumni from the initial AgFrontier Regional Agtech Incubator. “Cassie’s input has been valuable in connecting with potential applicants for our subsidised program places across Isaac, Central Highlands and Woorabinda, as we schedule a jam-packed program to help participants take their ideas to the next level,” Ms Comiskey says.
Planning is also underway for BeefTech 2020, an innovation and technology event for the Central Queensland beef community. It will be delivered by Agfrontier in Emerald on Tuesday, 24 November 2020, as part of QLD Agtech Month. Full program and registration details are coming soon at agfrontier.com.au/events.
Ms Turner grew up on a farm at Dalby, then moved to Brisbane where she spent 10 years before being drawn back out west eight years ago. The 30-year-old has lived in Emerald since 2017 and plans to stay indefinitely. “I have made many lifelong friends here, my weekends are constantly full, and I have everything I need close by,” she says. “Everyone here is extremely friendly and very supportive so I’m really looking forward to giving back to the community in this new role.”