Western Australia’s 2020 Rural Women’s Award State Finalists


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WA finalists have been announced from a competitive field for the prestigious 2020 AgriFutures Rural Women’s Award.


Jo Ashworth

Jo is the co-manager at Kalannie Community Resource Centre who works passionately on community building, farms in the Goodlands area with her family and trained as a mechanical engineer. She has led the Growing Kalannie Project which offers and promotes inclusive, wide scope opportunities to community members to complete traineeships and apprenticeships. This recognised training helps youth and potential new community members to consider remaining in or returning to Kalannie. Jo’s project is to formulate a successful program that has wider application across regional WA.





Cara Peek

Cara is a Yawuru/Bunuba woman, lawyer, entrepreneur and social innovator committed to fostering access and opportunity for rural and remote communities. Cara worked in government, non-profit and corporate sectors before co-founding The Cultural Intelligence Project and founding not for profit Saltwater Country, with a focus on empowering First Nations people to improve their social, emotional and economic well-being. Cara’s project is to create Saltwater Academy, a rite of passage through a collective of targeted place based people centred programs celebrating the Kimberley Aboriginal pastoral industry heritage.



Kendall Whyte

Kendall is a 27-year-old woman who grew up in Mukinbudin. After losing her brother to suicide in November 2018, Kendall helped create the Blue Tree Project. Starting as a grass-roots campaign, the project has flourished into a not for profit making an impact across Australia, with a mission of helping spark difficult conversations and encourage people to speak up when battling mental health concerns. Kendall’s project will further increase awareness through a regional tour of WA where community painting days will be held aimed at bringing people together to talk about mental health struggles and provide support.





Lauren Bell

Lauren founded a start-up that seeks to utilise insect farming as a way of sustainably managing organic waste, primarily food waste. Insect farming is an innovative emerging industry and Lauren is passionate about seeing regional areas actively partake in and develop the industry. Her aspiration is to develop a model of insect farming for organic waste management that is suitable for regional and remote towns across the North West. She believes this has the capacity to foster economic growth in those regions through job creation and support local agriculture through the provision of feed and fertiliser products.



Lucy Anderton

Lucy farms in partnership with her husband in a broad acre mixed farming enterprise. As an agriculture economist she recognised the need for an easy-to-use whole-farm business analysis tool to assist with building resilience in the industry.  Working with agricultural stakeholders, Lucy designed FARMSMART®. Using their own data farmers can explore alternative scenarios, enterprise mix and seasonal conditions. Lucy’s project will deliver business development workshops using FARMSMART® with a focus on understanding risk and financial outcomes in a complex environment.


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