BOARD MEMBERS

WHO WE ARE

Rural Financial Counselling Service NSW – Central West Inc. (RFCS-CW) was established in 2006. 

Currently RFCS-CW receives funding through the Commonwealth Department of Agriculture, Water & the Environment (DAWE) under the Rural Financial Counselling Program and the Drought Communities Small Business Support Program. 

These programs enable our service to provide Rural Financial Counselling and Small Business Financial Counselling across a service area known as the RFCS NSW CENTRAL REGION, which covered approximately 50% of NSW. The area spans from Cowra to the Blue Mountains, north to Lightning Ridge and the Qld border including Bourke and Brewarrina Shires, west to Cameron’s Corner.

To facilitate the delivery of RFCS services within the NSW CENTRAL REGION the registered trading name of Rural Financial Counselling Service NSW Central Region (RFCSCR) was established under the ABN: 54 606 039 416.

Rod Cooke - DIRECTOR/Chair

Rod Cooke has been the Chair of Rural Financial Counselling Service NSW – Central West Inc (RFCS-CW). since its inception in 2006, and was the chair of Macquarie Rural Advisory Service from 2003 until it amalgamated with RFCS-CW in 2006.

Rod Cooke has sound governance, leadership, stakeholder management and strategic planning skills developed through his experience in the Army, as a Manager/CEO of organisations including Community Services and Health Industry Skills Council and Orana Education and Training Co-operative Ltd.

He holds Master of Business Administration and is a fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD) with extensive board experience in the rural sector, aged care, small business, national and NSW industry training bodies, and professional association including NSW Government Training Committees. 

Jessica Brown - DIRECTOR/Vice Chair

Jessica Brown has been the Vice Chair of Rural Financial Counselling Service NSW – Central West Inc (RFCS-CW) since its inception in 2006. Jessica is also Chair of the RFCS-CW Governance, Policy  and Nomination Sub Committee.

Jessica has 18 years Board experience and is currently completing a master’s in leadership following a Communications undergrad.

Her prior professional experience includes advisory and strategic planning roles with corporate, government and non-government entities. She is the General Manager – Strategy and Growth at Marathon Health and is an AICD Graduate. 

Rae Craft - DIRECTOR

Rae Craft has been a Board member of Rural Financial Counselling Service NSW – Central West Inc. (RFCS-CW) since 2006 and was also a committee member of Macquarie Rural Advisory Service from 2001, until its amalgamation with RFCS-CW. Rae  has held the position of Secretary-Treasurer of the Board since 2006 and is also Chair of the RFCS-CW Audit and Risk Sub Committee as well as a member of the RFCS-CW Governance, Policy and Nominations Sub Committee.

Rae Craft is a partner in a grazing/cropping farm business and is the Trustee for a local Crown Land Reserve.  She has 15 years’ experience as a Federal Public Servant in Human Resources within NSW Western/Central, dealing with all regional businesses and promoting labour market programs including recruitment and training programs.

She is currently employed as Retail Manager in a small business and is an AICD Graduate.

Janice Stanford - DIRECTOR

Janice Stanford has been a board member of Rural Financial Counselling Service NSW – Central West Inc. (RFCS-CW) since 2006 and was also a committee member of Macquarie Rural Advisory Service prior to its amalgamation with RFCS-CW.

Janice Stanford jointly managed a successful family farm business enterprise for 37 years in the Dubbo district, producing cattle and prime lambs and was also a partner in a Dubbo financial planning business for 18 years.

Janice has been an active member of the Country Women’s Association holding various positions at both local and State level​s over the years and is an AICD Graduate.

Vern Hembrow - Board DIRECTOR

Vern has been a Rural Financial Counselling Service NSW – Central West Inc. (RFCS-CW) board member since 2008 when the Wentworth Balranald Farm Fightback Committee Inc, of which he was a director, amalgamated into RFCS-CW.

Vern Hembrow is a practicing public accountant with over 30 years’ experience. He is also a Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) designated by the Tax Institute, a Fellow of the National Tax and Accountants Association (FNTAA) and B.Bus (Accounting) and is a member of the AICD.

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