Strathmerton dairy farmer Greg Brooks likes to look beyond the farmgate and stand up for his industry.

Greg feels he has a better understanding of the world around him and his own community after completing the Fairley Leadership Program in 2019 with the support of Gardiner Dairy Foundation.

Already embedded in the community as president of the local United Dairyfarmers of Victoria branch and school council, Greg says strong leadership is vital for the future of the dairy industry.

The Fairley leadership program was a new and enlightening experience for Greg.

“It was the first time I’ve done anything like this, and it exposed me to all the different areas in our community and speakers from a range of backgrounds.

“We’ve all got our own perception of things, but this gave us a better understanding of our broader communities, along with the hidden benefit of building relationships with new people.

“I now have a better understanding of my leadership roles and how you can’t always push an agenda but need to understand all views.”

Greg said he wouldn’t have been able to do the program without Gardiner Dairy Foundation scholarship.

“You have to get someone to cover you on the farm and having the cost of the program on top of that would have made it too difficult,” he said.

He’s now encouraging other dairy farmers to seek a scholarship for the leadership program.

To apply for a place in a Gardiner sponsored Community Leadership Program in 2021 go to: or email Richard Meredith: