Bringing farmers and research together


Sharon O'Keeffe has turned an agronomy background and a passion for grains research into a diverse role working closely with growers.

The Grains Research and Development Corporation manager regional grower services - north was appointed to the position in June 2012 and sees the job as an excellent opportunity to see the research funded and supported by the GRDC.

"We're talking to farmers and if it doesn't deliver to a farmer, what's the point in doing the research," says Ms O'Keeffe, who is based in Boggabri, NSW.

Her portfolio includes managing local grower solutions groups in Queensland and NSW and extending research and development out to farm level.

"All of those groups are about making sure that any issues a farmer has at field level can be investigated locally and the results put back to them," she says. "It's a pretty good job for an ex-agro."

Other projects on the go are focused on breeding and farming systems, pathology, diseases, agronomy, insects and weeds.

Ms O'Keeffe, a former Landmark manager for agronomic and farm services in northern NSW and Queensland, says each year brings new challenges.

"Every season is different," she says. "Fifteen years later I'm still waiting for the normal average season that people talk about."

Watch Digital Farm TV's full interview with Sharon O'Keeffe:

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