Fight­ing for top of the south farm­ers

Marlborough Express - The Saturday Express, Marlborough - - CLASSIFIED INDEX - JEF­FREY KITT

They are big shoes to fill af­ter 18 years, but An­nette Lither­land says she is de­ter­mined to con­tinue the fight for farm­ers and the en­vi­ron­ment.

An­nette has taken over as the New Zealand Land­care Trust re­gional co-or­di­na­tor for Nel­son and Marl­bor­ough, tak­ing the top job from Bar­bara Stu­art fol­low­ing her re­tire­ment.

Bar­bara worked for the trust since 1999, find­ing her niche in help­ing farm­ers re­duce their im­pact on the land and see­ing a huge shift in at­ti­tudes about sus­tain­abil­ity.

The new trust head says she is ready for the chal­lenge and ex­cited to work with farm­ers in the top of the south.

‘‘They’re daunt­ing shoes to fill, but [Bar­bara’s] help­ing me into the job and is a phone call away,’’ An­nette says.

‘‘I’m look­ing for a win for farm­ers and a win for the en­vi­ron­ment, that’s why I took this job.

‘‘I’ll ba­si­cally work for the peo­ple, to help them achieve what they want to achieve.’’

The trust works with farm­ers, landown­ers and com­mu­nity groups to im­prove the sus­tain­abil­ity of land­scapes and water­ways.

An­nette, with more than 30 years in agri­cul­tural sci­ence, says she is com­mit­ted to con­tin­u­ing that work. Born in Motueka, An­nette grew up in North Auck­land and spent most school hol­i­days in the Tas­man area.

Fol­low­ing an agri­cul­tur­alscience de­gree at Massey Uni­ver­sity, she worked with AgRe­search for 25 years.

An­nette then worked as a tech- nician/shep­pard on a sheep and beef farm for four years, be­fore tak­ing a job with the Taratahi Agri­cul­tural Train­ing Cen­tre.

The role saw her train­ing youth to be the best farm­ers they could be, an el­e­ment of farm­ing she says is one of her pri­mary drivers. An­nette has been with Land­care since the start of the month, and says she is im­mers­ing her­self in com­mu­nity meet­ings and on­go­ing projects.

An­nette is a keen tram­per, kayaker, moun­tain biker and fisher, and says water qual­ity will be a ma­jor fo­cus of her work.

‘‘I re­ally want to con­nect peo­ple along catch­ments to work to­gether and solve the is­sue of water qual­ity,’’ she says.

In her po­si­tion with Land­care, An­nette says she wants to con­tinue the fight against Chilean Nee­dle Grass and in­ves­ti­gate the fu­ture farm­ing of plant-based pro­teins.


New Zealand Land­care Trust re­gional co­or­di­na­tor An­nette Lither­land takes over from Bar­bara Stu­art.

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