Graduated as an agricultural scientist, Chris has worked in various technical, advisory and commercial roles in over 30 countries mainly specialising in ruminant production and fodder conservation. He is a successful agribusinessman having established and owned, with his family, a number of companies specialising in cattle feeding systems and specialised stockfeed supplements. He was also a joint owner of a research company focussed on the wool industry. In 1992 he was a member of a UN Advisory Team sent to The People's Republic of Mongolia to assist the nomadic herders there after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Chris has also served, and is currently serving, on a number of SME governance and advisory boards within the commercial, government and not-for-profit sectors.
Between 2005 and 2011, Chris was a Judge on the popular weekly Australian ABC television series “The New Inventors” and has been the Australian correspondent on the NZ national daily farming show “The Country” on the Newstalk ZB radio network in New Zealand since 1994 – a role he still fulfils. In 2003 he and his NZ co-host were finalists in the NZ Radio Awards for Best Documentary for his ANZAC Day “Diggers Special” programme.
Currently Chris hosts the key agricultural podcast series AgriMinders, for Southern Cross Austereo on their PodcastOne app and through iTunes.
Chris has been active in his profession and the community – as National President of the Australian Institute of Agricultural Science and Technology and Chair of the Federal Ethics Committee and the Disciplinary Tribunal of that body – a role he currently holds. Chris is an Ambassador for the North Shore Heart research Foundation and was Deputy Chairman of Barker College in Hornsby, NSW from 2000 - 2014 as well as being active as a Life Patron of a number of service organisations and charities including International Aid organisation – “Life Through Livestock”. His activity in a number of local community and school organisations saw him receive the 2004 ‘Australia Day Individual Community Service Award’ from his home-town local government body - Ku-ring-gai Municipal Council.
Chris is much in demand as a Public Speaker and Facilitator – particularly in the area of Innovation and Embracing Change and is a skilled communicator. In 2014 the Australian Institute of Agriculture created the “Chris Russell Medal of Excellence” which is awarded each year to a graduating student in agricultural science in NSW based on their final year research project.
Chris has received a number of awards and honours recognising his contribution to the profession of agricultural science including being:
• Made a ‘Fellow of the Australian Institute of Agricultural Science and Technology’ in 1997.
• Created a ‘Champion of the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW’ for services to Agricultural Development
• Awarded the University of Sydney Faculty of Agriculture and Environment 2017 ‘Alumni of the Year’ for Innovation and Entrepreneurship
• Appointed as a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in the 2018 Australia Day Honours List for significant service to Agricultural Science and Technology through advisory, developmental and research roles and as a mentor and innovator.