Executive Profiles

Trevor Weatherhead AM – AHBIC Chair

Trevor started keeping honey bees in 1972. He spent time in the Queensland Forestry Department (1967 to 1983), and in the Queensland Department of Primary Industries as an Apiary Officer from 1983 to 1988. In 1988 he started a partnership with his wife, Marion, breeding queen bees for the domestic and overseas markets plus honey production until the business was sold in 2012.

Trevor has been active in the beekeeping industry since joining the Queensland Beekeepers Association in 1977.

Positions and achievements in the industry have been:

  • President and life member of the Queensland Beekeepers Association (QBA) plus President of the Brisbane Branch of the QBA.
  • President and Secretary of the Australian Queen Bee Breeders Association.
  • Active in securing markets for queen bees overseas in such places as Canada and the USA, when it was open.
  • Treasurer of the Federal Council of Australian Apiarists Association.
  • Secretary for the Second and Third Australian Bee Congresses held in 1988 and 2018.
  • Been involved with the Brisbane Show (Ekka) since 1979.  Filled many roles as the Honey Court Manager, Honorary Council Steward and honey judge.
  • Executive Director of the Australian Honey Bee Industry Council from 2012 to 2019 plus several terms on the Executive prior to taking on the Executive Director role.
  • Awarded the Goodacre Memorial Award for Meritorious Service to Apiculture in 2002.
  • Active in biosecurity within the industry and awarded the David Banks Biosecurity Lifetime Achievement Award in 2016.
  • Made a member of the Order of Australia (AM) in 2018 for services to the beekeeping industry particularly in biosecurity.


Stephen Fewster – AHBIC Deputy Chair

As a 4th generation commercial beekeeper in Western Australia, Stephen has worked in the family business for almost 40 years, in honey production and more recently almond pollination. He is also involved with the family farms cattle business.

Stephen has been an active industry member for many years including former Chairman and committee member of AHBIC, FCAAA, WA Farmers beekeepers section, as well as President of the Apimondia congress in Melbourne 2007. He completed the Marcus Oldum Rural Leadership course in 1998 sponsored by the honey industry.

Stephen’s current industry involvements are:

  • Deputy Chair of AHBIC
  • President of WA Farmers Beekeepers Section
  • Member of the Agricultural Produce Commission Beekeepers Committee in WA.


Leilani Leyland – Executive Member

Leilani has been actively involved in the beekeeping industry for 28 years. David and Leilani manage Bees Neez Apiaries 700 beehives in Western Australia. Most of the honey produced is sold to Capilano. We also diversify in Pollen collection and Avocado pollination .

Leilani is currently:

  • The Chairperson of the Beekeeping Industry Council of WA, the Peak body for beekeeping in WA.
  • The Treasurer and founding member (Est. 7 years) of the WA Honey Festival where she helps to promote the beekeeping industry every year in May.  The concept being to promote the importance of bees and lift the profile of the industry with a view to attracting new entrants.
  • An Executive committee member of AHBIC having valuable input into all matters involving the beekeeping industry on a national level representing Western Australia.
  • The Secretary of Farming Champions (annual event Farmer on Your Plate held in WA)
  • Secretary of the Mundaring Chamber of Commerce.


Peter Barnes – Executive Member

Peter is a 3rd generation commercial beekeeper who joined the family business in 1988.  The business provides pollination services, honey and Manuka production.

In 2012 Peter was involved in a workplace accident which severely reduced his ability to manage physical work.  As a result, the family business reduced from 1400 hives to 300 hives. Despite this, Peter remains very passionate about the industry and its future, particularly in the areas of resources and marketing.

Peter is currently on the QLD Beekeepers Association Executive.

Prior to his accident, Peter’s other interests included being 1st officer of the local Rural Fire Brigade and he was awarded the Commissioners Awards of Excellence Rural Fire Service Volunteer of the year in 2008 for the North Coast Region.


Therese Kershaw – Executive Member

Therese represents the fourth generation of her family tradition of beekeeping, so beekeeping forms the fabric of her life. With her husband Laurie, Therese and their family manage 2,500 beehives in New South Wales. Their business specialises in honey production and almond pollination.

In addition to running the family beekeeping business, Therese has also been actively involved in the beekeeping industry all her life. As her family have spread their wings, Therese’s passion to support the bee industry in different sectors has further grown. Her commitment to the industry, combined with outstanding organisation skills and an infectious sense of positivity, inspires fellow beekeepers and businesses to be proactively involved in the bee industry. The overall impact is increased collaboration across different sectors of the industry which translates to growth in the industry.

Amongst many activities, Therese:

  • Holds the position of treasurer of the NSWAA Southern Tablelands Branch (2008 – present) and is actively involved in all committee activities.
  • Coordinated the inaugural NSWAA Trade Show. Held in 2010, Therese managed the event and over the years has shown her dedication for the event to expand. She has strived for opportunities to enable beekeepers to gain knowledge and explore new equipment and technologies at the Trade Show. This provides an opportunity for beekeepers to learn new ways of improving their practices.
  • Held the position of Sponsorship & Trade Show Coordinator (2016- 2018) of the 3rd Australian Bee Congress and was an enthusiastic Committee member.
  • Held the role of NSWAA Sponsorship Coordinator in 2019 and successfully secured and grew sponsorship levels for the 2019 NSWAA Conference.
  • Organised a unique learning opportunity for a group of Australian beekeepers by organising an overseas tour – Aussie Beekeepers USA Tour 2019. The tour involves visiting USA/Canadian beekeepers and exploring their bee operations in order to learn from international experiences.

Therese is a dedicated beekeeper and is strongly focussed on working towards improving the beekeeping industry to provide security for future generations of beekeepers.


Dr Ben McKee – Executive Member

Dr Ben McKee is currently the Chief Operating Officer (COO) for Hive & Wellness Australia (HWA), previously known as Capilano Honey Limited, the largest packer of honey in Australia. He has been in this role since October 2019.

In a previous role, he was appointed Capilano Honey Ltd Chief Executive Officer on 1 July 2012 and Managing Director on 31 May 2013. He has been an employee of HWA and Capilano Honey for over 18 years.

Dr McKee has a Bachelor of Agricultural Science Degree (Honours), a PhD in a field of study related to the honey industry and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Previously, Dr McKee worked with the University of Melbourne and within the Victorian Department of Primary Industries, as well as managing his own commercial beekeeping enterprise.


Helen Goodall – Chief Executive Officer

Helen comes to AHBIC with over fifteen years experience within the not for profit sector, holding senior management and executive level positions. She began her career working for the ANZ Bank, followed by roles in finance and program management.

Helen is a strong business development professional with a Masters degree focused in Business from the University of NSW (UNSW). She also holds a Graduate Certificate of Management from UNSW and is a member of Women on Boards.

Being enthusiastic about making a difference and with a common sense and hard work approach, Helen is keen to enhance and build on the work of AHBIC for the benefit of the Honey Bee industry.


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