Gundagai’s Jake Smith commended with award for his inspiring commitment to community

A member of the new Gundagai branch for only twelve months, young territory sales manager Jake Smith, was commended for the initiative he took to raise over $250’000 within his local community for a local family battling cancer.

Mr Smith was recognised with the Company’s Give It award, which puts a spotlight on teams or individuals who have made a significant contribution to their local community and reflects the value that Elders put on supporting the communities in which the 178 year old company operates.

With the assistance of Gundagai locals, Brad Field and Nick Hawthorn, Mr Smith organised a stock drive as well as a goods and services auction which opened the gates for the generosity of other local people and businesses to contribute.

“We were just three blokes who wanted to lend a hand, and once we started it was apparent that there were so many people looking for the opportunity to help in any way,” said Mr Smith.

He spoke of the role that Elders and his community played in supporting his family during his father’s illness, setting a precedent for the way in which Mr Smith would continue to help those around him.

“Not only was it [the award] a pleasant surprise, but it also confirms that I’m a member of a team that is supporting and committed to assisting each other and the community,” said Mr Smith.

“Our business is people. The opportunity to work with locals who wanted to support each other is amazing but to be part of an organisation that nurtures and respects the aspect of community is truly special.”

“I would like to acknowledge Elders as an organisation that enabled me to be part of an event that is making the unbearable endurable for another family.”

South Zone General Manager Malcolm Hunt, says that the grass roots involvement that so many Elders branches and people have with their communities across the country is one of the things that makes the Elders brand so iconic.

“The pink shirt is a recognised icon of rural Australia, and I couldn’t be prouder that the people wearing this shirt are seen as advocates of support and assistance for their local communities,” he said.

“Although humble, what Jake has achieved should not be underestimated. His dedication to lending a hand purely to help someone less fortunate is a testament to his character,”

“Jake could not be more right when he says that our business is people. Rural communities are the fabric of our business, so supporting them and rewarding those who take initiative is something we need and are proud to do.”