Call for applications – Rural Safety and Health Alliance Independent Chair

Posted on January 20, 2020 in





The Rural Safety and Health Alliance (RSHA) is seeking applications for an Independent Chair from those who have a strong interest in building healthier and safer rural industries. Applications close 5pm (AEDT), Thursday, 13 February 2020.


Australia’s rural industries, represented by nine Rural Research and Development Corporations (RDCs)*, are leading the way on health and safety improvement through effective research, development & extension (RD&E).


The RSHA facilitates cross-sectoral RD&E to minimise the negative impacts associated with death, injury and illness, and maximise the benefits of a productive, healthy and safe rural workforce.  It invests in practical RD&E solutions informed by industry that address work, health and safety risks.


The alliance is overseen by a Management Committee comprised of representatives from each of the partner organisations and is driven by an Executive Officer. Further information on the partnership can be found at


The RSHA is seeking to fill the position of independent Chair. This is an important role in helping shape investments in practical, innovative and impactful projects and initiatives to improve health and safety outcomes for farmers, fishers and foresters.


The Chair of the RSHA is a three year position and the successful applicant:


– May be required for up to 10-15 days per year. Some travel will be necessary.


– Will be recompensed for their services to the RSHA at rates determined by the Commonwealth’s Remuneration Tribunal. All travel expenses will be covered


* The Rural Safety and Health Alliance is jointly supported by AgriFutures Australia, Australian Eggs, Australian Pork Limited, Australian Wool Innovation, Cotton Research & Development Corporation, Dairy Australia, Fisheries Research & Development Corporation, Grains Research & Development Corporation and Meat & Livestock Australia.


Key Selection Criteria

An effective Chair of the RSHA will have:


1. Knowledge and experience of health and safety in agriculture, fishing or forestry industries, including in relation to:


– Barriers to improved health and safety outcomes, and


– Innovative approaches to improving health and safety outcomes


2. Knowledge of the RDC system and an understanding of the duties and responsibilities of a Chair


3. Played a leadership role in rural industries, with an understanding of approaches to support producer adoption and practice change


4. The ability to think strategically and critically assess research, development and extension proposals, and


5. Strong communication skills and an ability to liaise and build productive partnerships with primary producers, RSHA partners, research and extension providers, regulators, health and safety organisations and key industry and government stakeholders.


Duties and Responsibilities

The Independent Chair’s responsibilities for the Rural Safety and Health Alliance, include:


– Chairing meetings and teleconferences


– Approving meeting agendas


– Providing critical and constructive comment on proposals, activities and outputs


– Publicly representing the RSHA in relation to media enquiries and stakeholder consultation


– Building productive relationships with key stakeholders.



Personal Attributes

Integrity: A commitment to fulfilling the responsibilities of Chair, acting ethically, appropriate independence, declaring any conflicts, confidentiality, and putting RSHA interests before personal interests.


Collaborative, constructive questioner:  Ability to work as part of a team, and demonstrate the passion and time to make a genuine and active contribution to the RSHA, as well as being prepared to exercise independent judgement and ask questions and challenge the program management team in a constructive and appropriate way.


Effective listener and communicator:  Ability to listen to, and appropriately debate, other people’s viewpoints; develop and deliver cogent arguments; and to communicate effectively with RSHA Management Committee Members, the Executive Officer, industry representatives and other key stakeholders.


Critical and innovative thinker:  Ability to critically analyse complex, detailed information, identify key issues, and to put issues to management to develop outcomes and solutions.


Leader:  ability to appropriately represent the RSHA; engender confidence in the program; and make and take responsibility for decisions and actions.


Estimated Time Commitment for RSHA Chair

The RSHA generally meet three or four times each year, face-to-face or by teleconference.


The Independent Chair will be required to liaise with the Executive Officer in relation to the meeting agendas and approve agenda papers in preparation for meetings. The estimated time requirement is two-three hours of preparation per meeting.


The Independent Chair may be required to consider items out-of-session, including providing feedback on communications items and quotes for media releases. The Chair may also be called upon to provide comment in the media associated with the activities of RSHA in relation to safety in primary industries. The estimated time requirement for these activities is approximately two-three hours per month.



The RSHA Chair is offered a sitting fee for meeting attendance and other work undertaken as part of the role. The fee is in determined by the Commonwealth’s Remuneration Tribunal.


In addition, travel expenses relating to participation in RSHA meetings or other approved travel plans will be reimbursed in accordance with Commonwealth Remuneration Tribunal.


Selection Process

A Selection Committee comprising current RSHA members and external expertise will consider written applications and will assess each applicant’s skills, experience and industry knowledge. The AgriFutures Australia Managing Director will be responsible for appointing the Independent Chair.


Nominees will be expected to declare any conflict of interest before appointment. Any subsequent conflicts of interest must be reported at RSHA meetings managed in accordance with AgriFutures Australia’s Conflict of Interest Policy.


If necessary, interviews for the Independent Chair will be held in Canberra and a letter of offer will be forwarded shortly after the interviews.


How to Apply

Applicants are required to complete the online application form, skills matrix and attach their CV (no longer than three pages) via  Smarty Grants.


As part of the application process applicants will be required to outline their relevant experience in Australia’s rural industries and expected contribution to the Chair role.



For any queries regarding the position, please contact:


Jennifer Medway


Senior Manager, Business Development


AgriFutures Australia




P: 0458 785 905

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