RURALCO’S chief executive is donating his full cash bonus to charity.
The boss of the farm services company, Travis Dillon, has pledged his $140,000 bonus to Lifeline Australia.
Lifeline’s chairman John Brogden said it was the first time any Australian CEO had proactively donated their full cash bonus to the charity.
“Mr Dillon has gone above and beyond in making this personal decision to help Lifeline answer 5500 additional crisis calls,” Mr Brogden said.
“This helps ensure that no suicidal person has to be alone, and gives hope that many families, friends and whole communities never have to experience the profound loss of losing someone they love to suicide.”
Mr Dillon described the suicide rate in rural, regional and remote Australia as a “national emergency”.
“We are not only losing our farmers but also the next generation of farmers,” Mr Dillon said.
Ruralco has also commissioned Lifeline to provide mental health and suicide prevention first aid training to its rural retailers across the country.
Mr Dillon was appointed to Ruralco’s top spot a year ago, starting on a on a $750,000 fixed salary.
Mr Brogden said the national charity has strongly encouraged Mr Dillon to talk about his donation publicly, not just because of the example it sets around CEO incentives, but because of the message it sent to people in rural areas.
Mr Dillon is in charge of an Australia-wide network of more than 40 specialist businesses, spanning more than 500 outlets, with many of its livestock, real estate and farm inputs supply businesses operating as joint ventures.
Its services expertise ranges from farm merchandise to fertiliser, wool, livestock, real estate, risk management, water trading, grain marketing, finance and insurance.
Today the company announced its 2015-16 after-tax profit had dropped to $4.2 million – down from last financial year’s $14.1m.
Although the rural agency and water services group posted strong results in its core traditional business, with rural supplies gross profits up 16 per cent to $118m and agency gross profits up 3pc to $105m, the company has spent $14m on restructuring and divestment costs.
- For 24/7 crisis or suicide prevention support, please call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or visit lifeline.org.au.