A young woman with a career in poultry, her own cattle stud, and a show secretary role is ready for her next challenge after being named Darling Downs Sub-Chamber Rural Ambassador for 2022.
Representing Pittsworth Show Society, Belinda Weber, 23, was selected from a field of five finalists at the Toowoomba Royal Show on Saturday and will now represent the Darling Downs at the Ekka in August.
Ms Weber said she was excited to be awarded the title and was ready to get to work.
"I feel really honoured. To be honest, it was anyone's guess on who was going to get it," Ms Weber said.
"I was really confident with the interview and I felt as though I nailed it afterwards. I was really fortunate to have met so many other ambassadors that are likeminded.
"I'm really keen to learn more about the show movement and agriculture and how young people can be of more assistance and get involved."
The ambassador program is a rural and agricultural leadership program for young men and women which is run by several Queensland shows.
It allows young people to promote agriculture, rural communities and show societies, while providing an avenue for local communities and ag shows to recognise, celebrate and develop future leaders.
Hailing from a family cattle property in the Rossvale area and currently living at Tummaville, Ms Weber's passion for shows began at school when she was part of the led steer program, showing on behalf of the Pittsworth State High School.
After school, she started her own stud, Belervale Charolais, began studying a bachelor of agricultural science at The University of Queensland Gatton campus, and started working as an egg collector at McLean Farms - a 621,800 bird capacity farm near Pittsworth.
Upon graduating from university with honours, however, she had to make a decision about her future.
"I always saw myself working in cattle, but because I'm starting to progress and move up the line and get promotions, I thought I'd be better off staying [in poultry]. It's quite refreshing working in one industry and coming home to another," she said.
After going full time, she soon progressed to a leading hand role before landing her current role in administration and maintenance, where she supports managers across the farms, helping them to prepare for audits and keep up to date with paperwork and legislation.
"In the last year, I've seen how valuable it is to be part of yet another industry and one that isn't spoken about a lot. It's a smaller industry, but a very important one all the same," Ms Weber said.
Ms Weber still has a soft spot for cattle, and in the future, wants to expand her stud and cattle production.
"There'll probably come a time when I have to choose one or the other, so I think beef will always be my my fallback option, but at this stage while I'm young, I'd really like to get involved with the egg industry because it's expanding so, so fast," she said.
"There are so many opportunities all around Australia and McLeans is a really exciting business to work for, with with all the technologies they're implementing. It's a very innovative and a high tech company and world class in terms of egg production."
Ben Westhead, representing the Crows Nest Show Society, was named the Darling Downs Sub Chamber Rural Ambassador runner-up.
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