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Georgina Gubbins OAM, ‘The accidental farmer’ - Women of Honour Series

Women on Boards - Leaders and Directors in Conversation

Release Date: 05/06/2024

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In this Women on Boards Honours series, WOB Executive Director Claire Braund talks to the 12 WOB members who were recognised in the 2024 Australia Day Honours.

In this episode Claire speaks to Warrnambool cattle and sheep producer and founding member and chair of Food and Fibre Great South Coast, Georgina Gubbins, who was awarded an OAM for service to primary industry, and to the community.

As she tells Claire “I wouldn't probably be sitting here having received this award if it hadn't been for Women on Boards!.”

Georgina started her career as a nurse then moved to Victoria’s Western District in the mid-90s to help on the family farm with husband. After he walked out, Georgina stayed with her two daughters and built Maneroo into a well-known prime lamb and beef cattle property.

“I call myself an accidental farmer because I only stayed on farms so that my two children could have continuity of life. Their life had been ripped apart. That's why I took on the farming, to have stability for the children.”

In this podcast she talks about the challenges she faced becoming an independent and successful female farmer while raising two daughters and about the tragic death of her brother Simon, who died by suicide.

Known as one of Australia's best and most innovative sheep and beef producers on his farm Murroa, Simon shot himself in 2003. His death sent shockwaves across rural Australia and Georgina’s family determined from the outset that there would be no pretence about the manner of his death. As Georgina wrote an article in The Age later that year: "Things happen for a reason and are sent to teach us a lesson”

In 2012 Georgina’s family established the Simon Gubbins Scholarship to study agricultural science at New Zealand’s Lincoln University, aligning with her deep passion about affording career opportunities to young people in agriculture and agribusiness in Australia. 

Content warning: This podcast discusses suicide. If you or anyone you know needs help:

Headspace on 1800 650 890

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