Robyn Judd has been a member of the Dairy Women's Network
since its inception, saying she was ''hooked from day one''.
Mrs Judd, from North Otago, and Maree Crowley-Hughes, from
Thornbury, in Southland, have been appointed to the board of
the Dairy Women's Network.
The Dairy Women's Network was established in 1998 by New
Zealand dairying women following the second International
Conference for Women in Agriculture held in Washington DC.
The aim was to develop and educate women and add value to the
business of dairying.
Originally from the Waikato, Mrs Judd moved south with her
husband Ian and their family in 2001. They live on their
145ha run-off in the Waitaki Valley, where they 50/50
sharemilk 700 cows for Meridian Energy.
In 2005, Mrs Judd was instrumental in establishing the
network's North Otago-South Canterbury regional group. She is
still regional convener for the area, although she was
looking for somebody to take over the role.
She oversaw the couple's farming operations in human
resources, bookwork and finances, animal health records and
calf-rearing. In the community, she has been involved in
committees at all levels in playcentre, schools and sports
Describing herself as ''truly grassroots'', she had a strong
belief in the core values of the Dairy Women's Network and
''When you're a dairy family moving into a new area leaving
your extended family behind, the network is invaluable
because the women you meet know exactly what you're going
through. It's about the people, getting local advice and
''It's that moment when you're in the shed in the early hours
of the morning, and you see a light on across the valley - to
know you're not alone and there's someone out there going
through the same thing as you.''
She was honoured to have a voice on the board ''for people
''I'm an everybody - a mother, a volunteer and a dairy farmer
who is absolutely passionate about this industry. I'm on the
board to encourage women like myself in their leadership
journeys - to help them aim for things like the dairy woman
of the year award, to challenge themselves and to be
inspired,'' she said.
Mrs Crowley-Hughes and her husband Peter Hughes own seven
farms in Southland and Otago which collectively milk 5000
cows and in total produce more than 2 million kg of milk
solids per year.
The mother-of-five is a director of five businesses and has
been a member of the Dairy Women's Network since 1998.
In 2011, she won the Dairy Women's Network Celebrate You
award. The award was presented annually to women active
within the network who demonstrated leadership, overcame
challenges and took up training and other opportunities to
help them climb their own ladder of success.
The Dairy Women's Network annual conference will be held in
Nelson in March.
Keynote speakers include Olympic rowing gold medallist Mahe
Drysdale and Wanganui eco-tourism operator Dan Steele.