The influential Northern Territory Cattlemen’s Association has a woman at the helm for the first time in its 31-year history.

Story By Kerry Sharp

Industry leaders across Australia have welcomed Tracey Hayes’ appointment as the first female CEO in the association’s 31-year history. Well before taking up the reins last year, after a rigorous interstate interview process, she’d been making her mark as a passionate industry advocate with an ardent interest in agribusiness and agri-politics.
Tracey, 44, has long been affiliated with the NTCA, starting as a committee member, then chairing the Alice Springs branch for three years, before becoming the Alice Springs-based executive officer. She’d also served as the NTCA’s National Farmers’ Federation delegate, which took her to Canberra. In March last year she stepped up to the CEO’s position.
The mother of four has had a lifetime of hands-on station work, first with her parents and older brothers Greg and Ken on South Australia’s remote Murnpeowie and Allandale stations, then on Central Australia’s Maryvale and Deep Well stations after marrying Billy Hayes, a descendent of the region’s well-known pioneering Hayes family. She still owns Alice Springs Equipment Hire, a business originally procured as an alternate income stream.
Tracey says she’s immensely proud of her role in the NTCA – and to be leading an organisation that appoints women on merit alone. “There’s a general perception out there that we work in a male-dominated industry, but the reality is that women make up half the industry and are a crucial half of the management teams on every property.”

This Story is from Issue #101

Outback Magazine: June/July 2015