Sheep Industry Business Innovation

Meet the team: Development Officer Steve Tunbridge

Development Officer Steve Tunbridge

Steve, having grown up in the city, developed his passion for agriculture after spending many weekends and holidays visiting and working on a friends farm west of Narrogin, and as a farmhand for a farmer at Cunderdin. He also spent his university vacations working on the CBH grain bins.

After commencing his career at DAFWA (then known simply as the Department of Agriculture) Steve has worked around the state and in different fields including agronomy, rangelands management, farm planning, wool production and pasture management – before rejoining DAFWA’s Katanning team in 2007.

Currently manager of SIBI’s ‘Increasing business and technical skills’ sub-project, Steve’s focus is in providing timely information to farmers that help them make informed decisions.

“We’ve recently reworked our Lifetime Ewe Management program to meet the latest needs of WA businesses, which now allows for greater learning outcomes to farmers in a mixed enterprise because they have access to an experienced facilitator over 2 years.”

“Another way we’re working with producers on making better production decisions is by driving the adoption of genetic technologies and the use of Australian Sheep Breeding Values for ram selection, encouraging selection based on pedigree information and not just appearances.”

He is also the coordinator and editor of the Ovine Observer; a quarterly newsletter on issues relating to sheep production and research, featuring articles written by DAFWA researchers and industry leaders.

Some of the greatest rewards from Steve’s extensive career have been the relationships built with grower groups, individual farmers, Land Conservation District Committees, community groups and government.

 “What I most enjoy about my line of work is the ability to get to know people from all across industry and all walks of life - it’s great to get out there and speak to people who are equally as passionate about agriculture and the future of the industry.”

He is also an active member of the Katanning community, having served as a school council member, President of Katanning Country Club Tennis and Secretary of Katanning Golf Club.

To get in touch with Steve, email