The process of electing a second industry representative to the Programme Governance Group has been completed.

Dr Sonia Whiteman is the Global Trials & Data Insights Manager in the Zespri Global Extension team.  Sonia is extremely passionate about the value that well executed and implemented science can add and has spent the last 25 years working in research management and extension roles across the primary sector.  Sonia’s past governance roles include membership of Kiwifruit Vine Health, NZ Food Safety Research Centre and NZ Institute of Agricultural & Horticultural Science.  Sonia has a Bachelor of Horticultural Science with honours and a PhD in plant pathology.  Sonia has a strong emphasis on supporting and developing the people around her, particularly young women, as she believes “the greatest success we’ll know is helping others succeed and grow”.

Dr David Tanner, Independent Chair of the Programme Governance Group of A lighter touch extended his welcome to Sonia saying “It will be great to be working with Sonia again. She has been well connected with growers in her many previous roles, as well as having performed governance roles in the horticultural sector. We look forward to having her join the team.”

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