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Cassie Duncan, Co-founder and General Manager

Cassie

Entrée

I was born hungry. By the tender age of three I was piling my plate high with veggies and eating the same size meals as my mum and sister. My favourite time of the week was heading to our local market where I would dance at the feet of the Salvation Army brass band, ride on the merry-go-round and help mum to pick out the very best fresh produce.

My hunger and passion for food has not subsided, in fact it has come to define me.

 

Main

After studying Arts/Business Marketing at Monash University I did what many Aussies do and headed to the UK, where I quickly discovered that the corporate world and I do not get along. From then on I have worked for not-for-profits and three years ago started Sustainable Table with Hayley Morris. Producing The Sustainable Table cookbook has been a career highlight to date because it allowed me to marry my two passions of food and the environment. It recently won Best Sustainable Food Book in Australia at the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards, which was a real thrill!

Dessert

By day I like talking, going to farmers’ markets and walking in the park with my dog Otto and other dog-people who find it socially acceptable to chat about their hounds as if they were children.

On hols I like getting active and being amongst nature, whether that be camping, hiking or skiing.

After dark I like to host outrageous dinner parties, dance to music that many would cringe at (Dolly Parton, Beyonce, Kanye West... I know, I know!) and very occasionally I like to blow my pay packet on ten course meals that take five hours to consume and two weeks to recover from.

Hayley Morris, Co-founder

Entrée

The prominent memories of my childhood are weekends on our family farm in rural Victoria making cubbies in the hay shed, watching my uncle shear sheep, eating mulberries off the tree, getting dirt stuck under my nails, swimming in mud baths in the dam and ending the day with a sore back from harvesting potatoes. The ‘farm girl’ in me was buried deep during my teenage years as I tried to be cool, but it resurfaced in early adulthood when I realised the key to making a difference in the world was to embrace my love of being active and outdoors.


Main

I entered the corporate world straight out of school, whilst studying a degree in International Business. At 24-years old I had a life-changing holiday to South Africa that shifted my perspective on life and my role in it. I became very aware of the environmental impact associated with everyday living. I struggled with my limited ability to make lasting and meaningful change. I decided my only choice was to leave my job and then found myself on a journey of personal discovery and learning, involving volunteering and postgraduate study in Sustainability, which led me to co-founding Sustainable Table with my school-friend Cassie. Early on we decided that we wanted the non-profit to be as commercial as possible, which led to us publishing The Sustainable Table and the development of a sustainability performance management system for businesses. The system is now a separate entity called Impact Sustainability and is the focus of my day-to-day work.  

Dessert

I am often described as organised, dedicated and passionate (some even say obsessive!) so my interests are aligned with my work: environment, culture, technology and of course all things food, wine and spirits. I’m the girl who likes to steer the dinner party conversation towards the topics most like to avoid, as I believe healthy conversation is a the way to start social change.