A new recognition program to honour peers from the past was introduced to celebrate the 20th running of the Canadian Livestock Auctioneering Championships during the Livestock Markets Association of Canada’s 38th annual convention in May.
Leonard Patterson of Dawson Creek, B.C.; Bruce McCall of Brussels, Ont.; Peter C. Gregory of St. Boniface, Man.; Terry Schetzsle of Veteran, Alta.; Sheldon Nicholson of Yorkton, Sask.; and LMAC’s inaugural secretary-treasurer John Milne of Lethbridge, Alta., are the first names to be inscribed on the LMAC Memorial Honour Roll.
The honour roll is one way to keep alive the names of people who in their own special ways have left a positive mark on livestock marketing in their provinces, explains LMAC executive administrator Rick Wright of Virden, Man. Each year, provincial members will name one person to the honour roll and LMAC has the option of naming someone whose contribution has been nationwide.
Danny Skeels, a beef producer and auctioneer from Rimbey, Alta., was honoured as the second-ever recipient of LMAC’s industry champion award.
Wright says this award is reserved to be given occasionally to an individual who stands out as having contributed to the wider good of the livestock marketing sector. It was first presented five years ago to Steve Primrose of Lethbridge, Alta., for his dedication to the traceability file.
Skeels, who has been the head auctioneer for Vold Jones Vold (VJV) for 27 years, won LMAC’s first Canadian Livestock Auctioneering Championship in 1998 and went on to earn a string of international and world titles. More than that, Wright adds, Skeels continues to give back as an industry promoter, professional, volunteer and mentor. It’s no coincidence that six of the 20 auctioneering champs through the years have been from the VJV fold.
Blair Vold of Ponoka, Alta., is this year’s inductee into the LMAC Hall of Fame joining his dad, Ralph Vold, who was the inaugural inductee in 2010. (Canadian Cattlemen, August 2010)
Perlich Bros Auction Market received a special award in celebration of reaching the half-century mark as a family business, now owned and managed by the second and third generations. The Perlich family joined with the Alberta Livestock Markets Association to host this year’s auctioneering championship and convention at Lethbridge for the first time ever.
Darren Rebalkin of Meadow Lake, Sask., who calls the sales at Meadow Lake Livestock Sales, topped the field of 30 contenders for the 2017 auctioneering championship buckle. Ryan Konynenbelt of Nobleford, Alta., with Southern Alberta Livestock Exchange, is the reserve champion followed by Albert Carroll of Omemee, Ont., with Ontario Stockyards in third, Tyler Slawinski of McCreary, Man., with Gladstone Auction Mart in fourth; and Donnie Peacock of Swift Current, Sask., with Heartland Livestock Services in fifth.
Jordie Waters of Nanton, Alta., who sells for Foothills Auctioneers and VJV, earned rookie-of-the-year honours, while William Haalstra of Dunnville, Ont., with Ontario Livestock Exchange, received the most-improved auctioneer award.
Judges Ryan Hurlburt (2016 champ), Gene Parks, Robin Gilroy, Dave Ropp, Doug Haughton and Danny Rosehill scored contestants on their clarity and voice control, chant, professionalism/confidence/calmness/mannerisms, enthusiasm, and general impression.
Ken McDonald of Indian Head, Sask., with the Weyburn Livestock Exchange, was recognized by his peers as the most congenial auctioneer, and Joe Perlich of Perlich Bros at Lethbridge was the pick for the people’s choice award.
Heartland Livestock Services, Swift Current, Sask., was named stockyard of the year.
The LMAC event rotates to Saskatchewan next year with the Parks family of Whitewood Livestock Sales hosting the auctioneering competition in conjunction with the convention at Moosomin the last weekend of May.