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Member Awards

The Institute recognises outstanding achievements by giving awards to Members who, in the opinion of the Board, have made outstanding, specific contributions to the advancement of Agriculture.

Awards issued are as follows (for more information regarding guidelines for each award please click on the AIA Award Criteria link):


Click here for the Word document of the 2021 AIA Awards Nomination form

» The Australian Medal of Agricultural Science

» Fellow of Ag Institute Australia

» Post Graduate Travel Bursary

» AIA Award Criteria

The Institute offers a range of awards both Nationally and on a state by state basis. For a comprehensive list of awards please click the link below:

AIA National & State Awards

 The above link highlights the extensive array of awards offered by the Institute to recognise outstanding achievement both in Australia & on a state by state basis. Further details of any of our awards can be obtained by contacting your Divisional Committee or the National office.

Australian Medal of Agriculture 2019

Professor Lester Burgess AM

Prof Lester Burgess

Professor Lester Burgess AM is one of Australia's most distinguished Plant Pathologists. He is a former Dean of the Faculty of Agriculture at the University of Sydney and has held adjunct professorships at the University of Pennsylvania and Kansas state University in the USA.  Professor Burgess is a recipient of the Crawford Foundation's highest award - The Crawford Medal - for his contribution to agricultural development in South East Asia and in 2003 the Government of Vietnam awarded him a national medal for Contributions to Rural development. The Australasian Plant Pathology Society created him a Fellow in 1999 and have named the annual "Lester Burgess Awards" in his honour. On Australia Day, 2019 he was appointed as a Member of The Order of Australia (AM) for significant service to international agricultural research in the areas of plant pathology and biosecurity.

Life Membership of the AIA Awarded in 2019

George (Jim) Hooper

(L-R: Jim Hooper with Rob Velthius Vice Chair of VIC)

Jim graduated from Longerenong Agricultural College with 1st Class Honours.

His Career commenced with the Department of Agriculture then James Hardie Pty Ltd: as Irrigation Specialist Sales Manager until his Retirement about age 65, some 19 years ago.

In 1966 Jim was part of the original organising Committee and formation of ATA, Agricultural Technologists of Australasia. He has sat on the Board including many and various committees since those meetings in 1966.

As ATA President, now called Board Chair circa 1993 & 1996, including ATA Vice President. Board positions within ATA, the term President was used, being changed to Chair around 2003 within the AIAST.

Jim had direct involvement with the ATA merger with AIAS in 1996 to form AIAST.

He was AIAST Treasurer: 2000 to 2007 and Vic Division Treasurer: 2006 to 2017 approx. He has assisted organising Vic Division Lunches, The Weekly Alert insertions with National Office. Function booking the Elgin Inn Hotel, assisting Dr David Smith AM. He has helped organise about 132 lunches with speakers. Jim relinquished these roles in January 2018. He has attended most Lunches. We have had 147 Lunches and owe much to Dr David Smith & Jim for this Lunch format.

Jim is a Fellow of the Institute granted around year 2000.

Jim’s service to Ag Institute Australia spans 52 years and has been exemplary. We present to Jim, Life Membership of Ag Institute Australia.

Fellow of Ag Institute Australia 2019

Richard B. Jackson

Richard Jackson trained at Dookie Agricultural College in the late 60’s and has consistently supported over the ensuring decades rural industries and farmers in particular. During his government service, farmers were assisted with their knowledge and awareness towards animal health, husbandry and welfare providing advice and extension. Farmers were encouraged within commercial employment to adopt new technology backed by scientific trials and to discontinue old established practices, which resulted in benefits of increased productivity and profitability.

As a farm consultant through periods of commodity price and seasonal challenges, Richard enthusiastically supported farmers in a financial, technical, physical and emotional context working very closely with farm families and important stakeholders.

Richard maintains continued interest in encouraging standards of rural education including the period when Melbourne University had few students training.

Ongoing interest and participation in activities of the AIA have been maintained over many years, providing many professional contacts and enjoyable activities.

Fellow of Ag Institute Australia 2019

Michael Pointer OAM


Michael Pointer has had extensive career, particularly in respect of his involvement  with mainland China with Sheep Skin exports, culminating with meeting the President of China and many senior Chinese Officials. He pioneered the trade commencing in the 1970's. A recent achievement in the 1990's was the development of the Angus Cattle Brand, Certified Australian Angus Beef [CAAB] for promoting Angus meat in the export, supermarket and to the fast food industry. His list of achievements has been recognised by the various Awards that have been presented to him by Governors and Presidents, as well as his Hon Life Membership of the Australia China Business Council which he holds in strong regard

Young Professional in Agriculture Award 2019

Dr. Elizabeth Read 

Elizabeth has contributed to significant research on toxicities and diseases of livestock in Australia, including Theileria, phalaris, and acute bovine liver disease. Her research has improved our understanding of the causes and transmission of these health and welfare concerns which has improved our ability to treat and manage livestock diseases.

Elizabeth has also dedicated her time to teaching university students about parasitic diseases of importance in Australian agriculture through her work with La Trobe University. She is involved in running practical sessions and disease outbreak simulations with the students, as well as engaging undergraduate students in discussions about the value of Australian agriculture.

Elizabeth maintains strong ties with Agriculture Victoria from her honours and PhD work, and now also writes information documentation for Datagene.

AIA Historical Award Winners

Click on the link below for a list of all Ag Institute Australia's Fellow & Medal award winners and the year in which they received the award.

AIA Historical Award Winners

AW Howard Trust

The Ag Institute Australia also has representation with the AW Howard Trust. The AW Howard Memorial Trust aims to promote and support pasture research. 

The Australian Institute of Agricultural Science (now Ag Institute Australia (AIAST)) established the trust in 1964.

The Trust commemorates the contribution of Amos William Howard to the adoption and use of subterranean clover as a pasture plant in Australia.

Please follow this read here for more details.