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Kristine Harpeni Sitompul is breaking new ground in more ways than one. Not only does she manage APRIL’s plant nursery, nurturing the saplings that will be used in our plantations, but she was the first women ever to join the company’s Assistant Trainee program.

After graduating from the Faculty of Forestry in Bogor Agricultural University, Kristine joined the first batch of APRIL’s Assistant Trainee program in 2005. Joining what was then very much a male-dominated industry was not an easy decision, but she enjoyed the full support of her family.

"Since childhood, my parents taught me to be able to live independently and be responsible for all the choices that I make," she said.

It’s certainly a choice that paid off: today Kristine is Nursery Manager in Kerinci Central Nursery, responsible for 220 workers who produce 24 million seedlings pear year which are then transferred to APRIL’s plantations.


Her approach to management is a simple one: to stay humble and not ask anyone to do something she would not be prepared to do herself. "I prefer to lead by example to my subordinates, so they will be confident following what I wanted," said Kristine

In 2016 she was selected to go to Brazil for a comparative study about nurseries. "It was an incredible trip,” she said. “Since I visited Brazil, my point of view about forestry became much broader. There are many improvements that we can make, and there are many innovations that we can do here. I'm very lucky," she said.

Kristine is a role model for all employees, whether male or female, but she had some special advice for women wanting to follow in her footsteps.

"Every woman can be successful, do not be afraid and stay focused, that's the key to achieving it. If you have your competence, then success will come to you."

Her colleagues certainly agree. According to Dwi Maryanti, Nursery Superintendent, Kristine’s leadership plays an important role in the operation’s success. "Kristine has great dedication to managing this nursery,” she said. “As a leader she is also able to provide a good example to all employees.”

The same sentiment was expressed by Claudinei Quinto, who serves as Nursery Operational Manager. "Kristine always gives a good example to all employees in the nursery,” she said. “With such strong leadership, she is able to build relationships among all workers.”