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Wine industry leaders with a vision: FL15

Wine industry leaders with a vision: FL15

Fifteen leaders from Australia's Grape and Wine industries have completed the Future Leaders 2015 program, delivered by the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation, funded by the sector and coordinated by Wine Australia in partnership with Wine Grape Growers Australia (WGGA) and Winemakers’ Federation of Australia. This year’s program was the sixth since the concept was launched in 2006.

The 2015 FL15 course group proved to be an excellent vintage in the fifth and final course session. Held in Adelaide from Sunday 18 October until Wednesday 21 October 2015, the session theme was Leading Advocacy and Influence within and beyond the wine and grape industry. The 15 course participants energetically and creatively applied their collegiate professionalism to planning in some detail how they as the Future Leaders 15 group will advocate, influence and contribute to the leadership of their industry post the FL15 course.  

"As a group they have committed to delivering an interesting and engaging session at a July wine industry conference in 2016," the Foundation's Manager of Leadership Programs, Graham Smith, said.

"This will be first stage of an ongoing process to reinvigorate the Future Leaders network within the industry around key challenges and issues."

Highlights of the Adelaide session included a challenging session on leading in complexity and uncertainty (Russell Fisher) and applications of social media at industry level (Kate Potter).

Alumni Dan Johnson and Con Simos generously provided their time and access to the impressive Australian Wine Research Institute.

The group benefitted from a half day workshop on the practice of lobbying and advocacy from Rob Hadler (ARLF Board), Caroline Rhodes (ARLP graduate) and Darren Arney (current participant on ARLP Course 22) who provided a diversity of insights from their extensive careers.

“I've enjoyed seeing (and being a part of) the shift from a bunch of individuals with a few sets of "best friends", to a group "think tank" dynamic with more people stepping up to contribute or question," FL15 graduate, Danielle Kennedy, said.

"I've been challenged, and it's all been incredibly valuable,” she said.

The session concluded with an excellent Graduation Dinner attended by ARLF Chair Dr Wendy Craik and the CEOs of the key wine industry bodies: Paul Evans, Chief Executive of the Winemakers' Federation of Australia; Lawrie Stanford, Executive Director of WGGA; Brian Walsh, Chair of Wine Australia; Mary Retallack, ARLF Fellow and Wine Australia director and Andreas Clark, Chief Executive Officer of Wine Australia.

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