The Australian Wagyu Association is indebted to those individuals who have provided exceptional contributions to the industry. In recognition of their services, Honorary Life Members and Hall of Fame recipients are voted on by the Board to acknowledge the time, effort and knowledge given by individuals to improve the Australian Wagyu industry.
Peter Winkler KBO
Peter Winkler is the founding member of the Australian Wagyu Association and served as the first President between 1989-1994. Through Peter’s vision for Wagyu in Australia, the breed society has enabled the Australian Wagyu industry to grow domestically and internationally for both breeders and beef producers.
Keith Hammond JKC
The Hammond family were one of the pioneers of the Australian Wagyu industry, establishing Robbins Island Wagyu on the remote northwest cape of Tasmania. As third President of the Association between 1997-1999 Keith Hammond has been an active part of the Board for more than 10 years and the industry as a whole.
Bob Talbot SF
It was quickly evident to the Board that Bob Talbot’s business acumen and advertising expertise would be of enormous benefit to the Association. Owning one of the largest advertising agencies in Australia at the time, Bob was more than capable of promoting Wagyu to great effect during his time on the Board and as President. While not an experienced breeder, Bob brought structure to the Association and provenance to the breed.
Nick and Vicki Sher SWS
Nick and Vicki Sher have made significant on the ground contributions to the Australian Wagyu industry, establishing the first crossbred herd with Holsteins, the first airfreighted carton beef export and forging many new markets in the early years of the Association. We can also thank Vicki for her vision for Wagyu with the design of the AWA logo in the early 90s, which is still in use today.
Greg Gibbons GIB
Greg Gibbons’ name goes hand in hand with Aronui feedlot, one of the first feedlots to accept Wagyu and Wagyu crossbred cattle for the industry. Since 2002, Gibbo has worked tirelessly with the Wagyu industry and AACo to bring his extensive experience to feedlotting, breeding, performance and evaluation to improve the outcomes for breeders.
Dr Simon Coates SMO
Dr Simon Coates is recognised for establishing one of the first Wagyu herds in Australia using imported Wagyu genetics from the US and Canada. As the second president of the Association between 1994 – 1997, Simon oversaw a substantial growth in membership and public awareness.
Shogo Takeda (Inducted 2015)
A breeder of Japanese Black Wagyu cattle in Japan for more than 50 years, Shogo Takeda was instrumental in releasing Wagyu genetics to the world and revered by many in the Australian industry. In his own words (translated from Japanese), ”I exported Wagyu to the USA and Australia just wanting people all over the world to have great marbling Wagyu. The members of the Australian Wagyu Association have spread Wagyu worldwide which helped my dream come true.”
Chris Walker (Inducted 2015)
Founder of Westholme Wagyu and one of the early importers of Wagyu into Australia. He surprised and maybe challenged some of the beliefs around the breed’s establishment outside Japan. In 1996 he exported 84 registered Fullblood females and three registered Fullblood sires and semen from three more, from Japan to the USA. These animals produced embryos and semen for export to Westholme in Australia which developed into the world’s second largest Fullblood Wagyu herd which was sold in its entirety to AACo in 2006.
Wally Rae (Inducted 2017)
Wally secured the Australian semen rights to the first Fullblood cattle that left Japan in the 1990s and was involved in early Fullblood breeding in Australia, with the first Australian-born Fullblood bull born at his property.
Lachie Hart (Inducted 2018)
Chief Executive Officer of Stockyard Beef, Lachie Hart was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2018 in recognition of his contribution to the Australian Wagyu industry. A family owned business, Stockyard Beef is vertically integrated and one of Australia’s largest exporters of branded boxed Australian beef. Lachie has been a valuable member to the Board and served on many red meat industry councils including Australia Japan Business Cooperation, Red Meat Advisory Council and the Australia Japan FTA Taskforce.