In announcing his decision, Merriman said it had been a privilege to lead AWI during a period when Australian wool has cemented its position as one of the world's great fibres.
"I step down proud of what we have achieved during my time as chair," Merriman said.
"We have invested record amounts in research and development, making breakthroughs that will future-proof the wool industry. Our increased focused on marketing, including the re-establishment of the International Woolmark Prize, has ensured Australian wool is back on the radar of the world's leading designers and brands."
Merriman joined the AWI board in 2004 and has been chairman since 2008. He will remain a director of AWI, with his role as director to be determined by AWI shareholders when he retires...