Meet LRIC’s Board members for 2016-2017
Oliver Haan – Chairman (Ontario Pork)
Oliver and Renate Haan, along with their four Jr. Partners, Rebecca (19; at Ridgetown Collage, passionate about farming and photography); Jacob (17; has an addiction to farming and all things mechanical): Leah; (14; into food and small fuzzy critters); Noah; (10; still experimenting to find his place) own and operate Haanover View Farms.
Haanover View Farms is a first generation, multi species, land-based family farm built on the back of its own branded, niche 100 sow farrow to finish “ecologically raised” pork products that are self-marketed locally to restaurants, value added processors, butcher shops, retail stores and direct to consumers. Beef, rabbit, chicken, and specialty crops round off the farm’s production. Oliver has a keen passion for food and farming, not just for his own purposes, but for all future farmers. Locally, Oliver has been active in the Northumberland/Quinte pork producers, has chaired Harvest Hastings, assisted the local 4-H swine club and is a past President of a local general farm organization.
Oliver has been on Ontario Pork’s Board of Directors since 2006 and has served on many committees and partner organizations both provincially and nationally. LRIC is near and dear to Oliver, as he is one of only two current Board of Directors that was involved in the planning and development of LRIC when it was still referred to as mission 2050, and as a director on the Board in its earliest days.
Brian Miller – Poultry Industry Council
Brian Miller, is a six year director on the Poultry Industry Council (PIC) Board, representing the Egg Farmers of Ontario, and is currently on the PIC Governance and Finance Committees. Brian is the elected representative from PIC to represent the four feather Boards at the Livestock Research Innovation Corporation. Mr. Miller is a graduate from the University of Guelph with an Agriculture Finance degree and he farms with his brother Barry on a diversified Huron County farm operation involving pork, eggs, beef and crops.
Cory Van Groningen – Beef Farmers of Ontario
Cory and his wife Heidi and their three daughters operate a 400 head cow-calf operation (Hillview Farm) in Haldimand county where all cattle are marketed through their family business retail stores, VG Meats. Cory and Heidi were awarded the 2012 Ontario’s Outstanding Young Farmer Award and Cory sits on numerous boards representing the beef industry including the Ontario Independent Meat Processors (OIMP), BIO and the Haldimand Cattlemen’s Association. Cory is a passionate advocate for the industry with a wealth of experience in marketing, business planning and research. Cory represents BFO as a Director for the Livestock Research Innovation Corporation (LRIC).
Jennifer MacTavish – Ontario Sheep Marketing Agency
Jenn MacTavish is a city kid who, while studying International Development at the University of Guelph, became enamored by agriculture and food. She never turned back and now has over 15 years of experience working with producers, processors and industry leaders. Jenn is currently the General Manager of the Ontario Sheep Marketing Agency (OSMA), a position she has held since April 2013.
Prior to joining OSMA, Jenn spent 9 years as the Executive Director for the Canadian Sheep Federation and for a two year period during that time, she also worked as the Canadian National Goat Federation’s General Manager.
She is currently the Chair of the Canadian Animal Health Coalition, sits on the National Farmed Animal Health and Welfare Council and is on the Board of Directors for the Livestock Research Innovation Corporation.
She is also a Board member for the Cambridge Self-Help Food Bank. Jenn is an avid knitter (showing her support of all things sheep). Originally from Brampton, Ontario, she holds a Master’s degree in Ruminant Nutrition from the University of Guelph. She resides in Cambridge Ontario with her husband and son
Dr. Gord Surgeoner – Independent Director
After completing his Bachelor of Science in Agriculture in 1971 at the University of Guelph, Dr. Surgeoner went on to obtain a Master’s degree in Economic Entomology in 1973, also from Guelph and a Ph.D. in Forest Entomology in 1976 from Michigan State University. Gord became an esteemed professor at the University of Guelph in Environmental Biology and Plant Agriculture, where he remained on faculty until his retirement in 2004.
Seconded from the University of Guelph in 1999, Gord became the President of Ontario Agri-Food Technologies, a non-profit organization consisting of members from farm associations, universities/colleges, industry and regional governments.
Most recently, Gord was inducted into the Ontario Agricultural Hall of Fame in June, 2014, received the 2014 University of Guelph MBA Leadership Recognition in Agribusiness and Food Award, was inducted into the Wellington County Agricultural Hall of Fame in September 2014, received the Canadian Renewable Fuels Association Award for Outstanding Dedication to the Advancement of Renewable Fuels in Canada in December 2014 and received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Guelph Chamber of Commerce in 2015.
Effective September 2014, Gord retired as President of Ontario Agri-Food Technologies, but continues to advocate on behalf of Canadian agriculture as an Associate with OAFT and through various Board positions. Gord is currently semi-retired and working with agriculture producers and food processors on sustainability initiative.
Dr. Cornelia Kreplin – Alberta Bio Innovates Solutions
Alberta Innovates Bio Solutions (AI Bio) offers the opportunity to develop new knowledge and products that can contribute to prosperity of Alberta’s agriculture, Food and forestry sectors. As an Executive Director at AI Bio, Dr. Cornelia Kreplin leads a team that facilitates investment in research and innovation projects which contribute to sustainable livestock, crop and forest production, food safety and the development of new ingredients, foods, beverages and bioactive substances. Cornelia connects people who can collaboratively build on their respective strengths and works with stakeholders to define future opportunities.
Cornelia’s training in veterinary medicine led to her career with Alberta Agriculture and Forestry. She served as the provincial reproductive pathologist and later as Alberta’s first Chief Provincial Veterinarian before accepting the challenge of building a Food Safety Division for the Ministry. Later, her position as Executive Director of Agriculture Research Division and an interim assignment as General Manager of Agricultural Products Marketing Council allowed Cornelia to remain in touch with the opportunities and challenges facing Alberta’s agriculture industries. Cornelia now applies what she has learned from these experiences to her position at AI Bio.
Dr. Paul Uys – University of Guelph
Paul is a retired executive with 40 years global retail experience specializing in brand creation, food product development and sourcing. During his 25 years at Loblaw Companies, he headed the product development department for the No Name and President’s Choice brands, and in his latter days he spearheaded its sustainable seafood procurement initiative. After retiring from Loblaw, he has become Senior Director, External; The Food Institute of the University of Guelph. He is also a board member at the Livestock Research Innovation Corporation, and “The Ontario Farm Agenda for Sustainable Agriculture”. Internationally he is a Trustee on the board of the Marine Stewardship Council, and the “International Panel of Experts on Sustainable Food Systems”. He is also the founder of a consulting company, FMG Consulting Inc.
Henry Wydeven – Dairy Farmers of Ontario
Henry Wydeven, a dairy farmer from St. Mary’s, Ontario, was elected to the Board of Dairy Farmers of Ontario (DFO) in 2014. He represents milk producers in the counties of Huron, and Perth. He previously served as chair of the Perth County Dairy Committee.
Mr. Wydeven previously worked as a crop insurance agent with Agri-Corp, was a counsellor for the Canadian Agriculture Skills Service under Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada, and has been involved with a number of different boards including Libro Credit Union and Quadro Communications Telephone Co-operative.
Mr. Wydeven chairs the Governance Committee, and also serves on the Audit & Planning Committee, and the Research Committee; as well as the DFO Advisory Committee for Milk. He is also the DFO representative on the Livestock Research Innovation Corporation, and the Stray Voltage Working Group.
Mr. Wydeven and his wife, Wilma, have three children, Kevin, Krista, and Janelle. He and his wife have dairy farmed since 1985 and now they milk 90 cows and run 350 acres with their son, Kevin, and his wife, Katie.
Mike McMorris – BIO
Mike grew up on a beef and crop farm near Guelph, Ontario where he later went to University, graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Science and a Master’s degree in Animal Breeding and Genetics. Mike worked for thirteen years with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food, first in extension as the Provincial Beef Genetics Specialist and then in several management roles. In 1999, he moved to the Ontario Cattlemen’s Association where he was Executive Director for a very busy five year period that included the Walkerton issue, a complete organizational review and restructuring and of course BSE.
Following that, Mike spent 4 years with Agricorp as Director of Operations responsible for delivery of crop insurance, CAIS and other risk management programs to Ontario farmers. In 2008, he moved to BIO as General Manager. The past eight years have seen BIO evolve into an international, multi-species organization, focused on helping to capture and tell the biography of food.
Mike is a natural optimist as evidenced clearly by the fact that he is a Toronto Maple Leafs fan.