Having grown-up on a wheat-sheep, broadacre farm near Kellerberrin – in the heart of the WA Wheatbelt – Richard has maintained a life-long interest in sustainable agriculture and sustainable rural communities. He is currently the CEO of the Northern Agricultural Catchments Council – one of Australia’s regional Natural Resource Management organisations. He is the former lead on sustainable development at WWF International, including having served as the Editor-in-Chief of the 2016 edition of the Living Planet Report – which he ‘launched’ from the International Space Station, and editor of the ground-breaking publication The Energy Report – which outlined a global pathway for the world to transition to 100 per cent renewable energy by 2050.
Richard is a keen student of climate change and its impacts on agriculture and environment – especially in his homeland in the Southwest Australia Biodiversity Hotspot. Richard has been globally recognised as an ‘influencer’ on the subject of climate change on Twitter – ranked at number 6 in the world in one study, and number 30 overall as a ‘Climate Change Connector’ in 2016 in another. An experienced ecologist, conservationist, environmental and sustainable development program manager, Richard has enjoyed a varied working career encompassing conservation, communication and education – leading to now being primarily focused on community-based natural resource management, private land conservation, and sustainable development. He is a champion of the critical role that farmers have in sustainable land stewardship.