I grew up on a wheat and sheep farm in the mallee, attended universities in Adelaide, Cambridge and Trinidad before working for ten years as an agronomist on a Unilever plantation in Solomon Islands - 1959 to 1968. Employed by CSIRO from 1969 to 1998 as a research scientist in Queensland and the Kimberley, specialising in water relations of annual crops, particularly sorghum, Collaborated with USDA in Texas, and in Somalia briefly on soil water matters. Co-author of the handbook "Soil Matters" CSIRO 1998. Author of The Coconut Odyssey published by ACIAR 2003 after 15 years collaboration on coconut production, management and genetic diversity 1984 to 1999. Currently supervising post-graduate students researching coconut biotechnology at the University of Queensland School of Agriculture and Food Sciences.
Fellow of the Australian Institute of Agriculture