|Former Australian John Landy joins the Invasive Species Council as its patron.|
In June 2012 while the world turned its attention to the looming London Olympics former Australian champion John Landy became patron of the Invasive Species Council, channelling the focus and determination that made him a world-beater into taking on the country's growing weed and feral animal problems.
Mr Landy has a deep concern for the growing problem of invasive species in Australia. With more than 20 years experience as a professional agricultural scientist, he understands the magnitude and importance of the challenge.
“I have decided to support the work of the Invasive Species Council because what they do is so important now and for future generations,” Mr Landy says.
“Australia boasts a world-class quarantine system, largely built to protect the agricultural sector. Improving our systems to protect the environment from weeds, feral animals and pathogens is the next big challenge.
“Today we see serious and costly invasions such as gamba grass, mimosa and rubber vine destabilising ecosystems in northern Australia.
"Twenty or so new exotic plants establish in Australia each year, and compounding this are large numbers of 'sleeper' weeds set to become problem weeds and take over native habitats in Victoria and elsewhere."
Mr Landy plays an important role in agriculture and the environment. He was a foundation member of the Land Conservation Council in Victoria, Chairman of the Meat Research Corporation, and Chairman of the Wool Research and Development Corporation.
He served as Governor of Victoria from January 2001 to April 2006.
John Landy was born in Melbourne in 1930. He was educated at Malvern Grammar School, Geelong Grammar and The University of Melbourne, where he was awarded a Bachelor of Agricultural Science degree in 1954.
For 21 years he worked in agricultural research for ICI Australia Ltd, and for the last 11 years was Research and Development Manager for Rural Industry.
He was a Foundation Member of the Land Conservation Council, and Chairman of the Meat Research Corporation and Chairman of the Wool Research and Development Corporation and has held a variety of other public positions. He is also the author of two books, ‘Close to Nature’ (1985), which won the C. J. Dennis Award for a work on natural history, and ‘A Coastal Diary’ (1993).
John Landy held the World Record in the Mile and 1500 Metres. He is an Olympic and Commonwealth Games medallist, was the second man to run the mile in under 4 minutes, and read the oath on behalf of the competitors at the 1956 Olympic Games. He was awarded the MBE for Services to Sport in 1955, was made a Companion of the Order of Australia in 2001 and received the CVO in 2006.
John Landy and his wife Lynne have two children, Matthew and Alison. He served as Governor of Victoria from January 2001 to April 2006.