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A group of alumni and ARLF staff standing on a staircase at the Rural Women's Awards 2022

Alumni connect September

12 September 2022

The monthly column from our Alumni Engagement Manager.

It’s always fantastic to hear about the great work of our alumni. But I have to say that in the last few weeks – every time I’ve turned on the TV or tuned into the radio, another of our alumni is front and centre. From Catherine Marriott’s (ARLP 17) delightful appearance on ABC’s Q&A to Michelle Deshong’s appearance on ABC TV’s 7.30, talking about her role as a lead facilitator with ‘Straight Talk’. Or hearing Joe Ross (ARLP 5) on Radio National’s Life Matters talking about his new bilingual children’s book, Winthali, that hopes to help preserve the Bunuba language in the Kimberley region. And I heard just yesterday that Kate Gunn (ARLP 26) is the recipient of the 2022 Award for Excellence in Agricultural Research as part of the Farmer of the Year Awards. Phew! It’s almost hard to keep up. And that’s to mention a few. So much to be proud of.  

Speaking of award winners, it was a privilege to be in the room with more than 500 people at Parliament House earlier this month to celebrate the Rural Women’s Awards Gala Dinner. It was inspiring to listen to the words of each state finalist and hear about their drive and passion for filling a gap in the knowledge, support or services available to those in RRR Australia. A huge congratulations to each finalist. These awards also allow us to catch up with our alumni. We managed to find and wrangle a few from the big crowd into the photo below– but know there were so many others there on the night. Congratulations to the AgriFutures team, which hosted a fabulous and inspiring event. 

We hoped to offer an Alumni Refresher program this year, REVIVE, a 3.5-day program immediately following the gala dinner in October. We needed minimum numbers for the program to proceed and didn’t quite get there this year. But we feel an appetite for another learning opportunity within the ARLF for our growing alumni network, so stay tuned.  

And finally, our gala dinner is fast approaching. If you haven’t got your tickets yet – don’t delay. Tickets are moving quickly, and it‘s an excellent chance for you to reconnect with your cohort, us and the broader ARLF community. Join a room of pretty spectacular people on 26 October as we celebrate 30 years of leadership! Click here to book your ticket.  

Julia Strang – Alumni Engagement Manager