John Kerin AM (1937-2023)

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​It is with great sadness that we recognise the passing of John Kerin AM, who was a champion for innovation in the farming and natural resource management sectors based on science, productivity and accountability. Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and the Senator Murray Watt, Minister for Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries both described John Kerin as Australia’s best ever primary industries Minister.

John believed the way to create long term increases in farm productivity was through reliable research and development programs, and he worked hard to remove inefficient subsidies and establish the agricultural research and development corporations in 1989. It was John Kerin’s foresight and commitment to science based research, agricultural economics and NRM that has lead the way for Australian farmers to be among the most efficient in the world. His basic research and development framework, involving institutions such as GRDC, MLA and CRDC, is still intact today, despite many changes of government and numerous inquiries.

Landcare Australia and our partners have lost a great supporter in John Kerin. From 2012, he was the independent Chair of Living Landscapes, one of Landcare Australia’s significant restorative projects delivered in partnership with Bundanon Trust, Southern Rivers CMA (now South East Local Land Services) and Greening Australia.

Dr. Shane Norrish, Landcare Australia CEO noted the importance of John’s contribution to Living Landscapes, which has restored large areas of habitat on the Shoalhaven River properties gifted to the Australian people by the late artist, Arthur Boyd and now managed by the Bundanon Trust.

“With John’s leadership and guidance, the successful Living Landscapes project greatly improved the condition of degraded habitat, involved strong community support and established one of the earliest Environmental Plantings Carbon projects registered with the Clean Energy Regulator.

John is predominately remembered for his service as a politician for the Australian people. We also greatly value his later contribution to the environmental restoration and support of his regional community in Living Landscapes, which still continues today”.

Vale John Kerin AM (1937-2023)

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