You are here: Home > The Leaflet > The Leaflet August 2008

The Leaflet August 2008

Simon says...

Chief Executive Officer - Dr Simon McKirdayWelcome to the August issue of The Leaflet which looks slightly different to usual.


I am thrilled to use this month's edition to launch our new and very functional website that has been developed by our Communications Officer, Kate Scott. The new look and feel is modern and fresh and contains current information on the CRC, our research activities, as well as our researchers. Over the next few months we will be adding more projects and research publications to the website. In the meantime, I am sure you will find the new site a welcome and refreshing change.


We welcome two new staff members to the CRC head office. Appointed as the new Education Officer, Melanie Hay will deliver the schools education program, as well as organising training workshops and other education activities. In a new role to the CRC, Sarah McKay started with us as Project Officer - Business Support. Sarah will look after project contracts and other business support functions. It's great to have them both on board and we will all value their contribution to the team.


 Each year, we conduct a Board meeting in a region where a number of our participants are located. This provides us with the opportunity to collaborate and catch up with staff and researchers from participant organisations. Last week our Board met in Darwin. The warm weather was a pleasurable relief from Canberra's cold and seemingly long winter. During our visit, we had the pleasure of meeting with Ruth Wallace from Charles Darwin University to chat about our community engagement project. This exciting initiative involves engaging with northern Australian Indigenous communities, providing them with a better understanding of plant biosecurity and how they can help manage potential risks and threats to Australia.


At the meeting, the Board approved the CRC's 2008-09 Annual Operating Plan which details the CRC's direction for this financial year. A pdf copy can be downloaded from our website.


The Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research has approved an independent panel to carry out the Third-Year Review. Nominated by the Board, the panel comprises Dr Kevin Sheridan (Chairman), former Director General, NSW Agriculture and Fisheries; Mr David Crawford, Chairman of Westralia Airports Corporation and former Chairman of the Export Grains Centre Ltd, and Dr Craig Phillips, Senior Scientist with AgResearch New Zealand.  A fourth member will be appointed by DIISR. The panel will carry out its work, including seeking input from all participants, over the next three months and will hold the formal review in Canberra in mid-December. 


Our cohort of PhD scholarships has nearly reached our original target of 32. This has been a significant achievement for our Education and Training Program led by Dr Kirsty Bayliss. If you are interested in applying for a scholarship, details can be found on our website. The CRC also provides PhD Top-up scholarships.


Until the next edition...



 Dr Simon McKirdy Signature

Dr Simon McKirdy
Chief Executive Officer
CRC for National Plant Biosecurity

Board Nomination Committee

As required by the Constitution of the CRCNPB Ltd, a Board Nomination Committee (BNC) has been formed. The Committee is required to consult with participants and members of the current Board, and to identify suitable candidates for nomination to the CRCNPB Members for election to the Board.


The election will take place at the Annual General Meeting on 5 November 2008 to fill three vacancies on the Board which will become available at the close of that meeting.


Committee members are John Lovett (Chairman); Mike Cole (DAFF); David Feinberg (CBH); David Hall (NSWDPI); John Kent (CSU); Shashi Sharma (DAFWA) and Andy Sheppard (CSIRO).

in this issue...

CRC Homepage 

a new look CRC website

The new website is finally here and provides readers with much more information on the CRC. READ MORE about the new site and how CRC members can log in to the members' area.

Chairman - Professor John Lovett

from the arm of the chair

With the 2008 Olympic Games closing yesterday, CRC Chairman Professor John Lovett identifies the differences between Austria and Australia (and the similarities). READ MORE

GRDC Rust Brochure 

GRDC releases brochure on rust pathogens

GRDC have distributed a brochure to create awareness among Australian travellers of the potential rust pathogen biosecurity threats. READ MORE

Other news...

Dr Mark Stevens recently travelled to Durban to attend the XXIII International Congress of Entemology. Mark chaired a rice pest management symposium as well as presenting several papers. READ MORE


Learn how marching headless chickens have affected the CRC's Business Manager, Nick Langley. READ MORE


 Plant Health Australia

 Tendrils is Plant Health Australia's weekly newsletter. To subscribe, email with your contact details.



 PaDIL Logo

  PaDIL is an image based website designed to create a 'virtual reference collection of pests and diseases'. PaDIL have just launched a 'Users Guide' to help researchers tailor searches to use PaDIL more efficiently and effectively. READ MORE