New Cattlemen’s Young Leaders

NewsMakers from the March 2020 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

Cattlemen’s Young Leaders

Cameron Olson. photo: Supplied

Cameron Olson was raised on a small beef cow-calf and finisher operation southeast of Calgary, Alta. 4-H piqued his interest in beef cattle and he participated in clubs in the Calgary region for eight years. Olson earned a bachelor and a graduate degree in animal science from Texas A&M University. His graduate research focused on temperament and feedlot performance in heifers, and was featured in the October 2019 issue of Canadian Cattlemen. While completing his graduate studies, Olson met Rosie Dwight, and they were married in December 2018. Olson is now working on a PhD at the University of Alberta, focusing on the genetic improvement of fertility traits in beef cows under differing environments. He plans to work as a consultant to help producers improve production practices. He and Rosie have also returned to the farm, where they help with the cattle. Olson’s mentor is Dr. Matthew May, team lead for the feeds and feeding module at Feedlot Health Management Services Ltd.

Cassandra DeMars. photo: Supplied

Cassandra DeMars is the third generation on her family’s commercial cow-calf operation near Webb, Sask. From a young age DeMars has been involved with the family operation, doing everything from checking cows during calving to feeding. She earned a degree in animal science from the University of Saskatchewan and also gained valuable experience working at the U of S dairy facility. In the summer she also worked as a forage research student with the Semiarid Prairie Agricultural Research Centre (SPARC), and with Farm Credit Canada. After graduating, DeMars moved back to southwest Saskatchewan to work on the ranch while her father was recovering from injury. He has since returned to ranching full time and DeMars has moved into her current role as a relationship manager with Farm Credit Canada in Lloydminster, Sask. She eventually would like to move back to the ranch full time. Reg Schellenburg, Saskatchewan beef producer and Canadian Cattlemen’s Association director, is DeMars’ mentor.

After several years as the provincial VBP+ co-ordinator for B.C., Annette Moore is stepping back, although she will continue as a VBP+ trainer. Over the years, Moore saw over 1,200 producers trained in on-farm food safety, and close to 100 operations registered. She also worked at the national level on the technical committee. Bree Patterson will be stepping into the VBP+ co-ordinator role for B.C., while also continuing in her current role as beef production specialist for the B.C. Cattlemen’s Association.

Brayden Lewis. photo: Supplied

Congratulations to the Saskatchewan Beef Industry Conference scholarship recipients, Courtney Orsen and Brayden Lewis.

Orsen hails from a farm near Hanley, Sask., and is attending the Western College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan.

Lewis is from Pierceland, Sask. He’s a 2019 graduate of Lakeland College’s agribusiness program and is now enrolled in animal science technology.

Dr. Cheryl Waldner. photo: Supplied

Dr. Cheryl Waldner has been tapped to chair a five-year research project to improve the health and productivity of beef cattle, while also limiting antimicrobial resistance. Waldner is a veterinary researcher with the Western College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan. The five-year program is funded by the Beef Cattle Research Council, University of Saskatchewan, and Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC).

The Manitoba government has created a new committee, called the Manitoba Protein Consortium, to help implement the province’s protein advantage strategy. Board members include: Kristine Tapley (regional agrologist with Ducks Unlimited Canada and owner/operator of Old Shore Cattle Company); Dickson Gould (president of the Progressive Group of Companies Inc.); Sav Bellissimo (store brands manager for Federated Co-operatives Ltd.); James Battershill (founder of Juno Food Labs); Emily Murray (general manager of Cargill’s McDonald’s beef patty business); Tracey Maconachie (president of the Life Science Association of Manitoba); Dr. Emma McGeough (assistant professor in animal sciences at the University of Manitoba); and Neil Cunningham (director of Climate and Clean Technology).

Michelle McMullen. photo: Supplied

Michelle McMullen is the new communications manager at the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association (CCA). She will lead communication efforts to promote the benefits of beef production in Canada, the important initiatives undertaken by producers to sustainably produce safe, high-quality beef and the work undertaken by CCA. Before joining CCA, McMullen worked in the grain industry and the federal government in various capacities including market development, communications, and government and public affairs.

Dr. Richard Krauss. photo: Supplied

This year’s recipient of the Boehringer Ingelheim WCABP Veterinarian of the Year award is Dr. Richard Krauss from Preeceville, Sask. Krauss has practiced veterinary medicine for over 50 years, focusing on bovine medicine and surgery. In that time, he has worked with a dozen associates, eight veterinary technicians and has mentored about 25 students. He has always been very passionate about veterinary medicine, especially bovine practice.

John Simpson has donated over $5 million to the University of Calgary’s new agricultural research centre. The centre, named the Simpson Centre for Agriculture and Food Innovation, will focus on research around public policy that supports growth and sustainability of agri-food and agri-business, particularly in Western Canada. Simpson is an Alberta rancher and the owner, chairman and CEO of the CANA Group of Companies. For more information on the centre, visit

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