Union’s Leadership Candidates Announced

There will be a new face in NFU Scotland’s Presidential team for its Centenary year but there will be no voting at the Union’s AGM at St Andrews in February 2013.

The post of President, currently held by Nigel Miller, is open for election every two years. Nigel, having completed his first two years, is eligible to stand for a further two years as President and is the only nominee for the position.

The two Vice-Presidential posts are both for one-year terms. The current NFUS Vice President Allan Bowie has been nominated, having been a Vice President since February 2009.  

The other Vice Presidential nominee is the Union’s Livestock Committee Chairman, Rob Livesey.  He will replace John Picken, who stands down after 2 years in the role.

Although there will be no voting, the formalities of having candidates proposed, seconded and elected will take place at the Union’s Council meeting on Tuesday 12 February 2013 at the Fairmont Hotel, St Andrews, following the Union’s AGM and Centenary dinner the previous day. The Union’s council is a body made up from representatives of each of the Union’s 74 branches.

A round of regional AGMs is scheduled for January 2013 and, with the agreement of regional boards, it is intended that the Presidential and Vice Presidential candidates will attend these events.

NFU Scotland Chief Executive, Scott Walker said:
“NFU Scotland remains a lead organisation in Scottish agriculture because of the time and effort that those who hold office – whether at branch, region or national level – are prepared to put aside for their fellow farmers.

“Nigel, Allan and Rob will take up office in February at a hugely important time for the industry with the CAP Reform process gathering momentum.  In addition, every sector of our farming industry faces a growing list of challenges.  This is a team with the skills and knowledge to meet those challenges on behalf of our members.

“However, 2013 will also be a year of celebration as we mark our Centenary.  Upon election, these three officeholders, with their wealth of experience and enthusiasm, will create a great platform to drive the Union into its next 100 years.”   

Commenting on his nomination, Rob Livesey said:

“I am passionate about Scottish agriculture and the crucial role that the Union has in securing a positive future for it.  Whether through my time as a branch chairman or my four years as Livestock Committee chair, I have thoroughly enjoyed the rough and tumble of agri-politics.  The time is right to have a go at a higher level.

“My previously role as a farm manager and my current farming business gives me a very broad understanding and deep appreciation of what mixed farming means to Scotland’s hills and uplands and I hope that will bring balance to the top team.

“This is a hugely exciting time for the Union and for Scottish farming.  I want to contribute positively to Union business and Scottish farming in 2013 but that will owe much to the hard work of my wife, Kath and son Iain, allowing me to spend time away from the farm to enjoy this new challenge.”  

Notes to Editors

  • The following are biographies of NFU Scotland’s Presidential and Vice Presidential candidates.  Photographs of the three nominees are available on request.

    Nigel Miller, Stagehall, Stow, Selkirkshire
    Nigel farms 550 hectares in partnership with two of his sons in the Scottish Borders. The upland hill farm supports 175 cows and 950 breeding ewes. Traditional beef breeds are the basis of the beef enterprise. Aberdeen Angus cross steers are sold through the auction ring with a percentage of heifers being contract finished near Kelso. The sheep flock is founded on Lairg type Cheviots. Spring barley and triticale are grown as feed.  Nigel, a former vet, started his NFU Scotland career as Chairman of the West Berwick Branch and is a past Chairman of the Livestock Committee. Nigel was Vice-President from March 2007 and elected President in February 2011.

    Allan Bowie, The Haining, Strathkinness High Road, St Andrews
    Allan is married with 2 sons and a daughter. He farms in North East Fife majoring on growing wheat, barley, potatoes and vegetables. The area farmed extends to about 600 acres on short limited duration tenancy/contract farming agreements. In addition, the business grazes a number of suckled calves each year. He was chairman of the North East Fife branch and served two years as chairman for East Central region. Allan has been Vice-President since February 2009.

    Rob Livesey, Firth, Catshawhill, Melrose
    Rob (51) is married to Kath with two sons, Rory and Iain.  Kath and Iain both work at home while Rory is a trainee auctioneer.  The family has been a tenant at the 600 acres Firth Farm since November 1998.  A further 180 acres are owned or let on various arrangements.   The family run 1100 Mule ewes, 80 Salers suckler cows and grow around 120 acres of grain.  Prior to taking on the tenancy at Firth, Rob was farm manager at Glenapp Estate, Ballantrae.  Rob is a former chairman of both the Girvan (now part of South Ayrshire) and Selkirk branches.  He has been Livestock Committee Chairman for four years. 
  • A round of regional AGMs is scheduled for January 2013 and, with the agreement of regional boards, it is intended that the Chief Executive and the Presidential and Vice Presidential candidates will attend these events.  The events are:

    Regional AGMs 2013


Contact Bob Carruth/Sarah Anderson on 0131 472 4006/4108

Date Published:

News Article No.: 152/12

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