Kristy Roa, 20, is a city girl who grew up in Hamilton and whose parents have no direct connections to farming although they own an engineering business that builds milk tankers for Fonterra.
At school, Kristy did the normal school subjects and was planning to go overseas when she left and work on a horse ranch in Canada. But she says quite by chance she heard about the farm cadet course run by Waipaoa Cadet Training Trust on the East Coast. Just driving there through the farmland to an open day to check out Waipaoa suddenly inspired her to make agriculture her career choice. She gained some experience for a few months on farms in the Waikato and then applied and was accepted for the two year course. While she loves the outdoor life, it's the business aspect of farming that is a major attraction. She says many city kids see farming as a lifestyle, whereas she sees the business dimension which she describes as 'pretty cool'.
Kristy Roa works as a shepherd on Iwinui Station (Hauiti Corporation) near Tolaga Bay – a 2,100 hectare property on which is run 5,300 ewes, 3,700 ewe lambs, 450 cows and 1,000 trading bulls. This is her first job out of Waipaoa but her long term goal is to manage a large scale sheep and beef farm in the Gisborne area and one day own her own farm.
Ahuwhenua TrophyOffice 6.3Level 6, Berl House108 The Terrace