by SUSAN MANN
Ann Slater of St. Marys is one of three Ontario farmers acclaimed to the executive of the National Farmers Union at the annual convention in Ottawa last month.
Slater, a former Ontario coordinator, is the new first vice-president (policy) for the national organization. The two other Ontario farmers on the executive are: Coral Sproule of Perth, acclaimed second vice-president (operations) and Joan Brady of Dashwood, acclaimed women’s president.
“There’s some pretty key positions that are filled by people from Ontario,” Slater notes.
The three Ontario farmers join Jan Slomp of Rimby, Alberta, who was acclaimed as president at the convention held from Nov. 24 to 30. Other executive members are: Marcella Pedersen of Cut Knife, Saskatchewan, elected women’s vice-president; Alex Fletcher of Victoria, British Columbia, acclaimed youth president; and Lisa Lundgard of Grimshaw, British Columbia, elected youth vice-president.
Slater says among the priorities for the NFU this year are continued work on the effect of neonicotinoid seed treatments on honeybees, the federal government’s proposed update of Canada’s Plant Breeder’s Rights legislation and the impacts on farmers of the Canada-European trade deal.
In addition to the executive members, the board also has people elected from the regions. Slater says Ontario has three members on the national board who are elected by Ontario members. Regions have either two or three members, depending on the number of members in the region. BF