Our People

Alister Shennan

Managing Director

After working in a senior management role with the PrimaryITO in Wellington, Alister could see that industry was not getting the training it wanted. So Agricademy was born.

Prior to the ITO, Alister held senior management roles with the West Australian TAB, TV and radio in New Zealand, and owned and operated his own advertising agency in Wellington.

As a family man with two sons, he is committed to seeing the next generation have opportunities to be trained well so they can benefit from long-term successful careers in agriculture.


Jane Cooke

Head of Operations

Jane has been involved in event management as Operations Manager for Toast Martinborough, setting up its systems and processes as new alcohol and health and safety laws came into force, streamlining and managing budgets, and running logistics for successful events from 2015 – 2019. Those operational skills were also in use when Jane was contracted to administer the annual Trans-Tasman Zanda McDonald Award supporting future leaders in agriculture.

It’s not all been land or rural based as Jane has worked on superyachts, crossing the Atlantic and sailing around the Mediterranean. She was also a line producer for the 2020/21 short film Milk.


Marie-Claire Andrews

Head of Growth

Marie-Claire (M-C) works alongside Jane and Al and the Board to execute on our growth plans across New Zealand.  She was most recently Head of Sales & Marketing at PaySauce, building the brand across the rural industry in NZ and helping them become payroll of choice for 50% of employing dairy farmers.  

M-C is a business development, networking and capital-raising specialist having run her own and other people’s businesses.

In her spare time, she set up a coworking space in her local town and is a Trustee for Retired Working Dogs NZ.


Carmen Smith

Manager, WOMOlife

Having started her working life as a shepherd, Carmen moved into the wool sheds and has never looked back. Carmen is a shearer, wool handler and presser and has worked in sheds all over the world. She loves to compete and has a few trophies to show for it. Along with her partner Gavin and four children, they run their 340 ha sheep and beef farm in Waipukarau.


Our Get Milking Presenters




Our WOMOlife Presenters

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