Judging Panel

The number and quality of submissions has been excellent and we are now pleased to announce the experts on our judging panel.

Our independent judges are:

Our panel bring strong expertise and business acumen from a variety of fields, and are committed to ensuring a strong and robust judging process. The judges will start with a review of entries in each category to develop a shortlist of the most outstanding businesses in the six award categories.

Arrangements will then be made for the judges to visit the workplace of shortlisted businesses in July to build on the detail of the award entry.

Lisa Rundell

Founder and Director of Lost Trades Fair, Tomahawk Marketing + PR and Rundell & Rundell

Lisa Rundell is the founder /director of Lost Trades Fair and has spent more than 25 years in marketing, business development, brand execution, strategic planning and working for multinational companies and agencies at senior levels both in Australia and overseas. In 2008 she started Tomahawk Marketing, a communications agency specialising in creative brand strategy, events and PR; consulting to advertising agencies and direct to client.

Lisa grew up in the Macedon Ranges, she moved back in 2011 and with husband Glen, a Windsor Chairmaker opened Rundell & Rundell; a retail shop showcasing the work of traditional artisans and a workshop that teaches chairmaking and offers classes with traditional master artisans. As an advocate for craftsmanship and rare trades, Lisa realised that traditional tradespeople received little in the way of promotion or acknowledgement in the arts and cultural landscape. The interest in craftsmanship was growing, yet access to traditional skills and the people who practise them had been lost. In 2012 a small idea grew into one of the largest events for traditionally trained artisans in the country.

The Lost Trades Fair was born on the principle that people are fascinated when artisans openly demonstrate their skills and share their knowledge. The Fair has a clear mission; to acknowledge and promote fine craftsmanship, traditional skills, rare trades and decorative arts. The first fair showcased 32 artisans and attracted 7,000 plus people. Three years on, the 2017 Fair showcased over 100 artisans and attracted more than 18,000 people, making it one of the largest regional events in Victoria.

To learn more about Lisa Rundell please click here.

McIvor Farm Foods

Founders and Directors, Jason and Belinda Hagan

Jason and Belinda Hagan of McIvor Farm are the third generation to farm amongst the granite boulders and rolling fields of Tooborac, north of Melbourne. A shared passion for holistic farming has led to a ‘beyond free-range system’ with the pigs playing an essential role. Just by going about their piggy business – roaming and rolling in the paddocks, digging for yummy bulbs the pigs assist in the regeneration and repair of the environmental health of McIvor Farm.

McIvor Farm raise old breed Berkshire pigs, handsome black pigs with distinctive white markings. They are pasture raised and free from stress and enjoy a diet free of GMOs, hormones and/or antibiotics. Old breed Berkshire pigs grow slowly, creating marbled cuts prized for their delicious juiciness and exceptional flavour.  McIvor Farm also has a range of award winning smoked products and small goods – all from one beautiful animal! The way pigs should live…..the way pork should taste!  Customers are an essential part of the holistic farming system at McIvor Farm. Therefore their support safeguards best practice for the animals and land and ensures a sustainable supply of delicious, wholesome food.

To learn more about McIvor Farm Foods please click here.

Regional Development Victoria

Regional Development Victoria (RDV) is the lead agency in developing rural and regional Victoria. It is the regional access point for councils, rural and regional communities and industry to engage with the Victorian Government. RDV has a state-wide presence with offices and staff across five regions. In the Loddon Mallee, three office locations are operated from Bendigo, Mildura and Swan Hill.

RDV functions are spread across two groups including Investment and Trade, and Economic Development and Recovery. Regional Investment and Trade specialists enable and activate industry and jobs growth with a focused sector-based approach. Economic Development projects are supported and facilitated across regional cities and rural towns and support the visitor economy. RDV also supports rural and regional communities to have a say about their priorities and shape their future through the Regional Partnerships and has a role in helping to support the regions recover from emergency and unplanned events.

RDV looks to bring together businesses, all levels of government and communities to identify and pursue opportunities, remove impediments and solve problems.

Frances MacDonald – Investment and Trade; Paul Goudie – Economic Development

To learn more about Regional Development Victoria please click here.