Soil CRC announces Penelope Wensley as new Patron

| Posted Apr 01,2021

The Soil CRC has announced the National Soils Advocate, the Honourable Penelope Wensley AC, as its new Patron. The announcement was made at the Soil CRC Participants Meeting held online on 24 March and attended by close to 200 participants of the CRC.

Penny Wensley follows in the footsteps of the former National Soils Advocate and inaugural Soil CRC Patron, the late Major General the Honourable Michael Jeffery AC, AO (Mil), CVO, MC (Retd).

The late Major General the Hon Michael Jeffery played an important role in 2016 in ensuring the Soil CRC bid was successful. He acted as an advisor to the bid team and was a critical part of the team that presented verbally to the assessment panel. As Patron, he continued to promote the objectives and capabilities of the CRC, whilst also providing valuable input to its directions and activities.

“I am honoured to continue his advocacy work, raising awareness of soils as a critical national asset and the contribution healthy soils can make to Australia’s long-term economic, environmental and social wellbeing,” Ms Wensley says.

Penny Wensley is also Patron of Soil Science Australia—a position she has held since 2011. She views these two Patronage roles as complementary and that working closely with both organisations will help advance another of her key goals as National Soils Advocate: to promote Australia’s strengths and capabilities in soil science and related disciplines, both nationally and internationally.

“Since its establishment in 2017, the Soil CRC has made important advances in increasing collaboration between scientists, industry and farmers to improve soil management. As Soil CRC Patron, and in my role as National Soils Advocate, I look forward to supporting this effort. I am looking forward also to learning more about the CRC’s soil research and innovation program and the ways this is contributing to addressing our national land management challenges,” she says.

Dr Michael Crawford, CEO of the Soil CRC believes Penny Wensley will be a great addition to the CRC.

“Penny brings knowledge, experience and a passion to see soil at the forefront of the national conversation. In this role, she will be exposed to the hands-on, frontline research that the Soil CRC is renowned for, bringing researchers and farmer groups together to help farmers better manage their soils.”

Penny Wensley was appointed National Soils Advocate by Prime Minister Scott Morrison in August 2020.