Beef Industry Innovation and Sustainability Award recipients

NewsMakers from the May 2019 issue of Canadian Cattlemen

The 2019 Beef Industry Innovation and Sustainability Award recipients (l. to r.): Anne Wasko, Tim Hardman, Bob Lowe and David Haywood-Farmer, president of the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association.
Jordan Dahmer. photo: Supplied

Jordan Dahmer and Leonard Retzlaff are two of the young people enrolled in the 2018-19 Cattlemen’s Young Leaders Program.

Jordan Dahmer hails from a small cow-calf operation near Brookdale, Man. She developed a passion for the beef industry at a young age, and spent six years in local beef and horse 4-H clubs. Dahmer completed a bachelor of science degree, with a major in animal science, from the University of Manitoba. She took a year off to travel, then returned to the University of Manitoba to pursue a graduate degree, researching extended grazing practices. Dahmer’s graduate research focuses on the suitability of different stockpiled forages for fall and winter grazing in Manitoba. Dahmer lives near Carberry, Man., and helps on her fiancé’s cow-calf, grain and potato operation whenever she can. Her mentor is Tom Teichroeb.

Leonard Retzlaff. photo: Supplied

Growing up on a mixed farm near Rosemary, Alta., Leonard Retzlaff was always drawn to the pastures and corrals, where he loved nothing more than handling livestock. He is currently active in his family’s operation, Saddleridge Farming Co. The Retzlaff’s cattle operation comprises a commercial cowherd, a purebred Charolais herd and a small backgrounding lot. They strive for efficient cattle that will perform from cow to feedlot. On the farming side, they grow feed, wheat and canola. Alfalfa seed and leaf cutter bees are also a key part of their farm. Retzlaff and his wife, Michelle, have two sons, Henry and George. Retzlaff is active within the community, serving on the boards of the local church and the Rosemary Grazing Association. His mentor is George Graham.

Chancey Guichon. photo: Supplied

Chancey Guichon of Strath­­more, Alta. received the inaugural James Hargrave Legacy Foundation Award at the Western Stock Growers Association AGM in March. The foundation was established to honour the memory of former WSGA vice-president James Hargrave, who died while fighting grassfire in 2017.

The award supports an individual interested in the beef industry, grassland stewardship and ecosystem services. Guichon plans to fund improvements on his cow-calf operation, such as implementing high-diversity crops into his swath-grazing rotation to improve soil health and increase water-holding and carbon storage capacity. He will also be upgrading his electric fencing equipment to increase use of swath-grazing fields and tame and native grass pastures. The foundation is again accepting award applications. More information is available at

Callum Sears of Stavely, Alta., and Travis Reesor of Elkwater, were elected as new directors-at-large to the Western Stock Growers Association board in March. Aaron Brower of Aden continues to serve as president, while James Jenkins of Okotoks is first vice-president, Cam Clark of Bassano is second vice-president and Phil Rowland of High River holds the past president position. The board extends its thanks to retiring director Toivo Miller for his time on the WSGA board.

The Canadian Cattle Identification Agency held its annual general meeting in April. Pat Hayes, representing the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association, takes over as board chair from Saskatchewan Stock Growers Association representative Mark Elford. Alberta Cattle Feeders’ Association representative Lyle Miller was elected as vice-chair. Alberta Beef Producers representative Howard Bekkering was re-elected as finance chair. Canadian Cattlemen’s Association representative Doug Sawyer was re-elected as executive member. Ken Perlich, Livestock Markets Association representative, was also elected as an executive member.

New to the board are Dan Darling of the Beef Farmers of Ontario, Nancy Howatt of the Manitoba Beef Producers and Shane Jahnke of the Saskatchewan Stock Growers Association.

The Canadian Roundtable for Sustainable Beef’s founding council and members received the 2019 Beef Industry Innovation and Sustainability Award earlier this spring (see photo at top). Bob Lowe, vice-president of the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association (CCA) and founding council member, presented the award to Anne Wasko, current chair of the roundtable and Timothy Hardman, beef director of the World Wildlife Fund U.S., during the CCA’s AGM in Ottawa on March 20.

The Canadian Roundtable for Sustainable Beef’s founding council includes beef producer Cherie Copithorne-Barnes, as well as members of the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association, Canada Beef, Cargill, JBS, Loblaws, McDonald’s and the World Wildlife Fund U.S. Founding members included several producer organizations, NGOs, processors, retailers, and food services and ag businesses.

Canadian Western Agribition introduced a new leadership team at its annual general meeting on April 10. Chris Lees of Arcola, Sask., was elected as president. Kim Hextall of Grenfell, Sask., was elected as vice-president. Executive members-at-large include Levi Jackson of Sedley, Sask.; Curtis Kuchinka of Regina, Sask.; and Michael Latimer of Olds, Alta. Bruce Holmquist of Kinistino, Sask. rounds out the executive as past president.

Jodi Banks, Dwayne Bulizuik and Courtney MacDougall of Regina, Stephen Scott of Calgary and Barry Young of Carievale, Sask., were also elected to the board.

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