Starting Gun Fired on Union Elections

Nominations sought for Presidential and Vice-Presidential roles

NFU Scotland is now taking nominations for the positions of President and its two Vice Presidential posts.

The election for these key appointments within Scottish agriculture will take place at the Union’s council meeting at the Radisson Blu Hotel, 301 Argyle Street, Glasgow G2 8DL on Friday 8 February 2019.  The Union’s AGM and annual dinner will be staged at the same venue the day before (Thursday 7 February).

Any NFUS member can be nominated for election, providing they are proposed and seconded by fellow NFUS members.   The presidential position is held for two years and a President can serve a maximum of two consecutive two-year terms.  Under the terms of the constitution, those elected to the position of Vice President will initially serve for two years before the post reverts to an annual election.  Members of NFU Scotland’s council – a body made up from representatives of each of the Union’s 73 branches - will select the successful candidates.

Current President Andrew McCornick, who farms in Dumfriesshire, will complete his first two-year term at the Union’s forthcoming AGM and has indicated that he will be standing for election for a second two-year term.

Vice President Martin Kennedy from Highland Perthshire, who was first elected to the position in 2017 has indicated that he will be standing for re-election as Vice President.  Gary Mitchell from Stranraer, who was first elected to the position of Vice President in 2017 has indicated that, after much consideration, he will not be standing for re-election.

Anyone wishing to stand as President or Vice President should contact NFU Scotland Chief Executive Scott Walker to obtain a proposal form, which must then be signed and returned to him by close of play on Wednesday, 12 December 2018.  

Details on the candidates will be announced at the Union’s Christmas Press Briefing on Monday 17 December.

Mr Walker commented: “The job of electing those who will fill our Presidential seat and the two Vice Presidential posts during one of the most exciting and challenging times for Scottish agriculture is now underway and we invite applications from those keen to shape our post-Brexit farming industry.

“In the run up to our annual general meeting in February 2019 – taking place in Glasgow - we will be holding a number of hustings across all of our regions early in the New Year.  This will give all candidates the opportunity to speak to as many of our members as possible as we approach the elections.

“I would ask that if anyone is planning to run for either President or Vice President that they contact me, so the Union can provide support where possible.  Making our wide network of branches and offices aware of all candidates will maximise the opportunities available to them to speak to the membership first hand.

“If potential candidates want to learn about what the roles entail, I am able to provide a full explanation of what is expected of a Vice President and President.  For those keen to represent their fellow Scottish farmers and crofters, these are the most respected positions in our sector.”  

Notes to Editors

  • The current President of NFU Scotland is Andrew McCornick, who has served for two years and the current Vice Presidents are Martin Kennedy and Gary Mitchell.
  • Presidents are elected for a two-year period and cannot serve more than two consecutive two-year terms.  Those elected to the position of Vice President will initially serve for two years before the post reverts to an annual election.
  • Nomination forms for the position of President and Vice President are available from NFU Scotland Chief Executive Scott Walker.  Scott can be contacted on 0131 472 4001 or email:  Alternatively, Scott can be contacted in writing at NFU Scotland, Rural Centre, West Mains, Ingliston, Midlothian, EH28 8LT.  
  • The application period will close at 5pm on Wednesday, 12 December 2018 and candidates will be announced at the Christmas press briefing on Monday 17 December 2018.
  • The elections will take place at the NFUS Council Meeting being held at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Glasgow on Friday 8 February 2019.
  • Notice is also given that the Annual General Meeting of the members of NFU Scotland will be held at the Radisson Blu Hotel, 301 Argyle Street, Glasgow G2 8DL on Thursday 7 February 2019 at 11am until 12.30pm. The normal business to be conducted will be the consideration of the Directors’ report; the Auditors’ report and the Financial Accounts for the year ended 31 October 2018.
  • A photograph of the current Presidential team is available on request from


Contact Ruth McClean on 0131 472 4108

Author: Ruth McClean

Date Published:

News Article No.: 146/18

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About The Author

Ruth McClean

Having worked in the communications and journalism industry for the last 11 years, NFU Scotland’s Communications Manager Ruth McClean understands the needs of journalists and has extensive knowledge of the wider agricultural industry. After growing up in Argyll and Bute and working in the area as a reporter for local newspapers for eight years, Ruth joined NFU Scotland in 2013 in her current role. She is also Editor of the Union’s membership magazine the Scottish Farming Leader.

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