THE HORTICULTURE industry gathered in Melbourne today for the Annual General Meeting of the grower-owned, not-for-profit research and development corporation, Hort Innovation.
Three resolutions were put forward to make changes to the constitution, attracting a combined 737 votes from members.
Each resolution to change the constitution had to be passed by at least 75 per cent of votes cast by voting members entitled to vote on the resolution.
Resolution one was to change the composition of the Director Nomination Committee to add a levy payer. This was supported by the Hort Innovation Board, and more than 98 per cent of votes saw the change pass.
Resolution two was to adjust the composition of the Board to five elected directors and four appointed directors. This was supported by the Hort Innovation Board, and more than 99 per cent of the votes were in favour of the change, leading to it being implemented.
The third resolution put forward was to change the voting rights of members to one member, one vote, rather than votes being calculated on the amount of levy paid. This resolution was not passed - 18.5 per cent of votes were in favour of the change, and 80.55 per cent of votes were against it.
Following a vacancy on the Board, 30 applications were received for the position, with each considered by the Director Nomination Committee. This was filled on a casual basis by Dr Mary Corbett in June.
In line with constitutional procedure, following today’s AGM, the Board met to determine a permanent appointment. Dr Corbett was appointed to the full-time director position, effective today, in which she will serve a three-year term to 2020.
Dr Corbett has more than 22 years’ experience as a director, spanning a diverse range of industries from cotton growing to public health, and has a strong focus on research and development and corporate governance.
After that appointment, Selwyn Snell was returned as Chair with Mark Napper returned as Deputy Chair.
Hort Innovation is charged with investing more than $100m per year into research, development and marketing activities using industry levies, contributions from the Australian Government and other sources.