New Hall of Fame inductees named

Rueben HaleThe West Australian
Clive Francis' widow Margaret and Dawson Bradford at the ceremony.
Camera IconClive Francis' widow Margaret and Dawson Bradford at the ceremony. Credit: The West Australian

Lamb industry stalwart Dawson Bradford and well-known researcher Clive Francis have been recognised for their achievements with their induction into the Agricultural Hall of Fame.

Their contribution to WA was acknowledged at an awards ceremony on Tuesday, with WA Governor Malcolm McCusker making the presentations.

Established in 1999 under the auspices of the Royal Agricultural Society of WA, the Agricultural Hall of Fame pays tribute to the men and women who have made a mark with their significant impact on the present and future of agriculture.

Mr Bradford's and the late Professor Francis' portraits will hang alongside 57 fellow pioneers at the David Buttfield House at the showground and will be on display during the IGA Perth Royal Show.

Royal Agricultural Society WA president Hugh Harding said the Hall of Fame offers the perfect opportunity to showcase the remarkable difference the inductees make and have made to the rural sector.

At the ceremony, Mr Bradford was hailed as a trailblazer.

He was acknowledged as a national leader within the prime lamb industry and a man that had constantly broken new ground with his genetic improvements at his Poll Dorset stud.

Mr Harding said Mr Bradford had been a member of numerous industry committees and boards, including serving as chairman of the WA Meat Marketing Cooperative and the Meat Elite committee.

"He has developed a specific wool self-shedding breed of Poll Dorset sheep and, working closely with researchers at Murdoch University, has delivered new technologies for measuring lean meat yield of prime lamb carcasses, and improved the eating quality of lamb," he said.

"In addition, with interests in the pig industry, Mr Bradford played a large part in early research on straw-based sheltered housing for pigs - now used throughout the industry," he said

Mr Bradford was awarded an honorary doctorate of science by Murdoch for services as a sheep industry leader.

The other inductee, the late Professor Francis, was recognised as a leader in the field of clovers.

He was an agricultural scientist who facilitated the collection of seed samples from around the world to expand Australia's capability for biodiversity. Professor Francis served on the Advisory Panel of Australian Genetic Resources Network, GRDC Wheat and Barley Research State and national committees.

Professor Francis also served as the chairman of WA State Pasture Industry Advisory Committee, the Coarse Grains and Oilseed Advisory Committee, and the Coarse Grains and Oilseed Advisory Committee.

"Professor Francis spent 53 years in the WA Agriculture Department - the last seven as deputy director of the University of Western Australia's centre for legumes in Mediterranean agriculture," Mr Harding said.

"This pioneering man devised a groundbreaking breeding program for more than 20 varieties of subterranean clover, catapulting his name into the history of contributions of major scientific firsts that make WA farming the most efficient in a Mediterranean zone climate," he said.

"The significance of this man's work led to a number of awards including the Farrer Medal - Australia's highest honour for contributions to agriculture; Russia's prestigious Vavilov Institute Memorial Medal; the Institute of Agricultural Science Medal and a Fellowship from the Australian Institute of Agricultural Science."

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