Iconic Western Australian company, Brownes Dairy, has appointed Natalie Sarich-Dayton as the first female CEO to lead the company in its 135-year history.
She takes the reigns from outgoing CEO Tony Girgis, who has led the company for the past seven years. Girgis was instrumental in navigating the company through an ownership change and championing the return of traditional cheddar cheese to West Australian supermarkets for the first time in 14 years.
Sarich-Dayton has more than 20 years of international food and beverage experience working for some of the world’s top consumer product businesses, including The Coca-Cola Company and Unilever.
More recently, Sarich-Dayton has been Director of Sales and Marketing at Brownes Dairy, firmly establishing Brownes as the number one dairy brand in Western Australia.
Sarich-Dayton said that Brownes Dairy is a remarkable company with a thirst for product and brand innovation.
“Everyone in the business genuinely believes in our mission of ‘doing dairy better, together’, and I’m excited to take the reins as CEO and continue our tradition of nourishing Australian families with the best range of high-quality dairy products.”
Sarich-Dayton was a driving force behind Brownes Dairy’s return of the iconic ‘Milkos’ home delivery service, which became a lifeline to the WA community during the COVID-19 lockdowns.
The service won national and international accolades, including a Gold trophy in the Stevie Awards for Women in Business, as well as Social Idea of the Year in the annual Mumbrella Awards, and “best COVID Pivot” by the Australian Financial Review.
Outgoing CEO, Girgis, said that he has been honoured to have led such an iconic Western Australian company and he congratulated Sarich-Dayton on her appointment.
“I have greatly enjoyed working alongside Natalie, and believe she is an inspired choice as the company’s new CEO who will continue to bring success to WA’s favourite dairy.”
Sarich-Dayton joins an all too small group of women in charge of WA’s most successful companies including Elizabeth Gaines, the CEO of Fortescue Metals Group and Stephanie Unwin, CEO of Horizon Power.
“It’s crucial WA business take a leading role in promoting more women to leadership positions, and I’m honoured that Brownes has entrusted me with this vital role,” she said.