Personal growth comes with Susan's panel service

Author: | Date: 20 May 2015

Caption: GRDC western regional panel member Susan Hall says serving as a GRDC western regional panel member has helped her develop networks across Australia.

Serving as a Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) western regional panellist in recent years has been a rewarding experience for Western Australian extension specialist Susan Hall.

“Being a panellist is a privilege and a great personal growth opportunity,” she said.

“You develop terrific networks across Australia and it gives you the chance to grow your knowledge which helps you in any role that you undertake in the grains industry.”

Ms Hall encouraged other industry people to apply for recently advertised positions on the western regional panel.

Successful applicants will take up the part-time positions from September 1, 2015, and appointments will initially be for two years.

“The panel system provides broad industry representation into the GRDC and ensures that the information delivered out of the GRDC and its investments is regionally relevant,” Ms Hall said.

“GRDC’s western panel sets the strategy for GRDC western region investment now and into the future.

“As a panellist you have real responsibility as you have oversight and input into where grower levies are being directed, and you need to ensure that growers are getting value for money out of their levies.”

Ms Hall, who has served on the western regional panel since August 2012, grew up on a grain farm in Quairading, WA, has a Master of Business Administration (MBA) and in recent years led the Grower Group Alliance in WA.

“When not working on the panel I now do consulting work for the research, development and extension (RD&E) industry – such as developing stakeholder engagement strategies, project development and supporting early career professionals in extension,” she said.

“I also work voluntarily on a capacity building project for the WA grains industry.”

Ms Hall said her extension background meant she had a strong focus on making sure that GRDC investments delivered information ‘on-ground’ that resulted in practice change and that the panel always had growers’ bottom lines in mind when developing investment projects.

“For every project, we consider: ‘How is this research going to deliver a profitable, productive and sustainable outcome for grain growers?’” she said.

Ms Hall said the suite of investments developed under the ‘Soil Constraints – West’ project were among the western regional panel’s achievements in recent years.

“This collaborative research effort was initiated by the GRDC western regional panel in recognition of the massive limitations that soil constraints pose to WA grain growers,” she said.

“The $33 million project is led by a steering group, comprising growers and industry people, to ensure that the project continues in the right direction and delivers results on-ground.”

The GRDC regional panels are comprised of grain growers, agribusiness practitioners, scientists and the GRDC’s executive managers, with provision for other industry experts to participate as appropriate.

Applications for western regional panel positions are open until Tuesday, June 9, 2015.

Candidates with skills and experience including extensive knowledge of the Australian grains industry and excellent communication skills are encouraged to apply.

The GRDC is one of the world’s leading grains research organisations, responsible for planning, investing in and overseeing RD&E to deliver improvements in production, sustainability and profitability across the Australian grains industry.

More information about the GRDC regional panel application process is available on the GRDC vacancies page or by emailing

Contact Details

For Interviews

Susan Hall, GRDC western regional panel
0400 889 036


Natalie Lee, Senior Consultant, Cox Inall Communications
08 9864 2034, 0427 189 827

Region West