Ex-Forestry Australia Head Bob Gordon to Chair $100m AFWI

Statements attributed to Senator the Hon Murray Watt Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry

Mon 26 Feb 24


The board for the establishment and management of the $100 million Australian Forest and Wood Innovations (AFWI) research institute has been appointed.
AFWI is a collaboration between the Australian Government and the University of Tasmania, committed to advancing research and innovation to support Australia’s forest and wood product industries.
The newly appointed board will oversee all AFWI activities and expenditures and will operate as an advisory board, and also endorse the strategic direction and research priorities of AFWI.
The appointment follows an expression of interest and nomination process undertaken by the University of Tasmania.
Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Murray Watt said the appointment of the board is the next step in establishing AFWI.
“The appointment of the Board will allow the strategic direction and research priorities of AFWI to be finalised, which means AFWI-funded research will shortly begin,” Minister Watt said.
“This research will help to support our Australian forest and wood product industries, as well as our journey to generate greater value from our sustainable forestry industries; forests are fantastic carbon stores, after all.
“The investment in AFWI will support innovation and research that will change how we use wood to benefit our community into the future.
“The establishment of the Board will help turbocharge this innovation.”
The Board will be chaired by Mr Bob Gordon who fellow board members will join:

  • Ms Diana Gibbs
  • Ms Christine Briggs
  • Dr Heidi Dungey
  • Mr Brian Farmer
  • Mr Michael O’Connor
  • Ms Rachael Cavanagh
  • Mr Andrew Leighton
  • Dr Julianne O’Reilly-Wapstra
  • Mr Andrew Wilson

The Board will be supported by a Research Advisory Committee, which is expected to be established shortly.
For more information on AFWI, visit the department’s website.


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