Andrew Baxter appointed to the AIA Board

Andrew Baxter appointed to the AIA Board


Experienced advisor and thought leader, Andrew Baxter, has been elected to the Agricultural Innovation Australia (AIA) Board by its members at last week’s Annual General Meeting.

Andrew Baxter

Andrew is a highly accomplished business, marketing and communications professional who has worked with large companies, brands and government bodies in board, advisory and executive capacities.

He is currently Chair of Australian Pork Limited (APL), Deputy Chair of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, and is a Non-Executive Director of GrowthOps, BirdDog (ASX), Foresters Financial, OzHarvest and The Queen’s Fund.

He is also a Senior Advisor at BGH Capital and an Adjunct Professor of Marketing at the University of Sydney.

AIA is a not-for-profit public company established to facilitate joint investment and collaboration in cross-industry agricultural issues of national importance. It has an independent and skills-based Board. Its current members and investors include Australia’s rural Research and Development Corporations (RDCs).

Board Chair, Dr Anne Astin AM, said an appointment of Andrew’s calibre to the AIA Board is a significant outcome for the ongoing success of the organisation.

“This is a pivotal time for AIA as we continue to evolve and grow the organisation by investing in big cross-sectoral and highly collaborative projects that generate considerable value for Australia’s agriculture, fisheries and forestry sectors,” Dr Astin said.

“It is my pleasure to welcome Andrew on behalf of the Board. He brings significant commercial experience combined with a deep understanding of the RDC ecosystem as a long-serving Board member of APL. Having directors with diverse experience is critical to a skills-based Board like AIA’s.”

Andrew said he was looking forward to helping AIA build on its recent momentum.

“It’s an exciting time to be joining the AIA Board, especially given the company’s successful launch of its Environmental Accounting Platform.

“AIA's mandate is widely recognised by industry, producers and value chain stakeholders. A market gap clearly exists for an entity like AIA, that can look across commodities, leverage collective knowledge and investment and deliver whole of sector solutions and impact.”

Andrew also previously Chaired a number of other Boards in the university, not for profit and regional tourism industries, and was the Senior Advisor to KPMG’s Customer, Brand and Marketing Advisory business.

And prior to this, Andrew successfully led major professional services firms for over a decade as the CEO of two of the country’s largest communications agencies, Publicis and Ogilvy.

The AIA AGM also saw Ian Haliday’s appointment ratified by AIA’s members, having joined at the end of 2023 to fill a Board vacancy.

Ian is an experienced Director, Managing Director, and CEO with a track record of delivering sustained growth and performance in large, complex organisations.

He has experience operating in domestic, mature and emerging international markets, and across infrastructure, risk management, government relations and regulation, governance, innovation, manufacturing, B2B marketing, purchasing and supply chain management.

Ian was formerly the Australian Consul-General Dubai & Northern Emirates, UAE & General Manager, Australian Trade & Investment Commission – Middle East, Africa & Pakistan and his previous roles include Managing Director of Dairy Australia and CEO of KR Castlemaine Foods.

Heather Stacy retired from the Board by rotation as per the company’s constitution.

Dr Astin thanked Heather for her service and informed AGM attendees she had contributed enormously to AIA’s strong governance and strategic direction, having served on the Board since 2021, just a few months after the organisation was established.

“We have had an incredibly busy 12 months having capitalised on the solid strategic and operational foundations established in the previous year, which Heather was instrumental in helping us achieve,” she said.

“The company has successfully delivered highly collaborative, whole of sector initiatives, including the first ever common framework for sector-level greenhouse gas accounting for Australian agriculture, fisheries and forestry.”