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Our Board

CHAIRPERSON

Justin Birchmore

Justin is a company director with broad commercial experience across a range of industries. He has sound business acumen, a background in capital markets and in project development for companies at various stages including start-ups.

His career has drawn upon these skills in various business development roles including a key supporting role in two successful Australian Stock Exchange listings. Management participation with these companies pre and post listing involved engagement with ‘top end of town’ business, but his focus over more recent years has been on the establishment and growth of relatively small companies in sectors including agriculture, water and retail. Justin also has experience in advertising, marketing, public relations and events management.

Justin is Managing Director of Australian Plant Factory (a JV partner in a prospective algal biofuel project with the traditional landowners of the Kimberley region) and Green Planet Agriculture (with the exclusive Tasmanian grower rights to an exciting cherry plum hybrid). He previously acted as Managing Director of a plant tissue culture laboratory from its inception and is Co-founder & Director of a current specialty mushroom start-up by the name of Academy al Funghi.

Justin has been a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors for over twenty-five years, and has taken the position of Chairperson of Sprout Tasmania, since May 2020.


TREASURER

Sue Cutler

Sue joined the Sprout board in May 2021, and comes to us with formal CPA qualifications, as well as a wealth of experience working in a finance capacity in a variety of sectors, currently at Metro Tasmania. Sue and her husband Don have a farm in Judbury where they hope to one day produce feijoas. Sue is keen to work with Sprout and the small scale producers to share her expertise and be a part of the movement of building a robust local food system in Tasmania.

(photo to come)


BOARD MEMBER, SECRETARY

Don Thomson 

Don Thomson has a diverse background as a farmer, agribusiness entrepreneur, landscape architect, agricultural systems consultant and rural sociologists. He is passionate about ethical and regenerative agriculture that supports vibrant local communities and thriving circular economies. He was a livestock farmer for 28 years, in Victoria and NW Tasmania, but since selling the Tasmanian farm in late 2019 he is focusing on using his design-thinking, research and evaluation skills to help not-for-profits and businesses break through actual and perceived barriers and identify innovative products and new ways of working to achieve more positive economic, environmental and social outcomes. 


BOARD MEMBER

Stephen Peak

Stephen grew up in Byron Bay on the north coast of New South Wales, it was both here and in Queensland where he trained as a Chef and worked in several high-end restaurants. During a stint in London, Stephen was part of a team at Paxton & Whitfield cheesemongers where he sourced cheeses from small scale dairy producers for the retail and wholesale markets. Upon returning to Australia, Stephen worked in food importation and distribution, where he specialised in dairy before moving into General Management.

In 2018, Stephen moved to Tasmania to work at the Agrarian Kitchen Eatery, where he is now Head Chef. It was on a previous trip in Tasmania when he visited the Agrarian Kitchen that he saw an opportunity to focus his cooking on what he is most passionate about; high quality ingredients from local producers. As head chef, he has been able to establish close working relationships with Tasmanian producers and growers bringing local ingredients to the forefront of high-quality dining in Tasmania.

Stephen hopes that through his role on the board of Sprout he can help to foster stronger relationships between restaurants and local producers. Stephen works closely with farmers and fishermen on a daily basis and is interested in bringing the very best Tasmanian produce to restaurants and eateries all over our state.


Tony Scherer, Co-Founder of Sprout is our Sprout Patron.


We would also like to acknowledge and thank our past board members:

Alice Percy

Natalia Urosevic

Emma Terry

Cameron Johns

Rob Batten

Simon Stubbs

Jorja Callow

Larna Pittiglio

Ian Locke

Luke Burgess

Joanne Smith

Amanda Woolams

Deanne de Leeuw

Alistair Primrose

Alexandra Seager

Tim Russell-Jarvie

Tanya Dalton

Nick Haddow

Courtney Drew

Hannah Martin

Genevieve Koning

Michaela Lamprey

Mark Massie