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Tim Marsh, 3rd Term
Tim Marsh is a beef and crop farmer along the dykeland in Poplar Grove. Tim farms 750 acres of land of which almost 300 acres is dyke land. Before taking over the family farm in 2000, Tim graduated from Acadia University and was a Geologist for a gypsum mining company. He currently serves as the NSFA rep for the Canadian Federation of Agriculture, and as a CFA representative on the national Land Matters Group Advisory Committee. Tim was one of the original Directors on the Board of Dairy Farmers of Nova Scotia and has served as the Chair of Hants County Federation of Agriculture. Tim has three sons: Tyler and Peter who both drive trucks and help out on the farm, and his son Craig farms on PEI.
Andy Parker, 2nd Term
Andy was raised in Grafton, Kings County and attended Dalhousie University where he met his wife Gail. After graduating with a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering, they moved to Alberta where Andy worked in the oil industry. In 1982, Andy and Gail, and their children Ian and Janet, returned to Nova Scotia where Andy was the Manager of Petroleum Resources in the Provincial government, and later worked with the Canada Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board, involved in the regulation of offshore petroleum activities.
Andy and his family now operate CAP Farms Inc, an apple farm in Grafton, Nova Scotia. This farm was started by Andy and Gail in the 1980’s, and was managed by Gail until Andy’s retirement in 2007. The farm is currently being transitioned to their daughter Janet and her husband, Eric Chappel.
Andy is a past president of the Nova Scotia Fruit Growers Association and is still active in the organization.
Matthew Roy, 1st Term
Matthew Roy owns and operates Coastal Grove Farm in Upper Port La Tour. For over 25 years, Matthew has been farming. Whether it was with livestock, hay, vegetables, or novelty crops. Over the years he has farmed conventionally, no-till, biodynamically, and organically, and has also practiced permaculture. Matthew holds a degree in Ecological Agriculture as well as a certificate in Permaculture Design. Additionally, Matthew recently completed his journeyman certification and is now one of the first Farm Technicians in Nova Scotia to train future apprentices.
Matthew currently sits on the boards for Greenhouse Nova Scotia, Organics Nova Scotia, and the Yarmouth Shelburne Federation of Agriculture. When it comes to his current involvement with the NSFA, Matthew sits on the Policy Advisory Committee and the Ag Sector and Human Resources Advisory Committee.
Catherine Manning, 1st Term
Catherine Manning grew up on a dairy farm in Pictou County. After graduating for the NSAC with a B.Sc. Agriculture, Catherine and her husband Dean pursued farming while holding down jobs in the agriculture industry. Together they operate Manning Family Farm, a mixed farm of beef and vegetables in Falmouth.
Over the years Catherine has been involved in a number of organizations, boards, and committees. An avid 4-H volunteer, she has also sat on the boards for 4-H Nova Scotia, Avon Chamber of Commerce, Greenhouse Nova Scotia, Nova Scotia Angus Association and the Maritime Angus Association.
Catherine’s goal with applying to Council is to “continue to support farmers best interests at all levels of involvement in the ag industry and help guide challenges in respect to climate change and the environment.”
Harry Van der Linden, 1st Term
Harry Van der Linden operates Lindenright Holsteins with his family just outside Antigonish, in Brierly Brook. Harry has always been involved in agricultural organizations, most recently with Holstein Canada. Spending nine years on the board for Holstein Canada, three of which were on the executive, and one as past president.
With him, Harry brings lifelong experience on local, provincial, and national boards.
Janice Landry, Thursday Morning Keynote
Janice Landry has been a storyteller for as long as she can remember. The award-winning Halifax journalist and author started writing fiction as a pastime in her youth when she grew up in Purcell’s Cove, Nova Scotia. She lived for many years at the namesake of her newly released, 6th book, “Eye of the Ocean,” her late maternal grandparent’s summer home.
Janice’s late father, Capt. Basil (Baz) Landry, M.B., of the former Halifax Fire Department, was the first person she can remember who gave her a love of both fiction and non-fiction by, firstly, creating make-believe stories during her childhood when he tucked her in at bedtime, and secondly, in her teen years, by explaining why reading the newspaper was important. Janice later became a reporter, producer, and anchor with CTV Atlantic.
Capt. Landry was honoured in 1980 with Canada’s Medal of Bravery for his part in rescuing an 8-week-old infant from a horrific house fire. Landry’s late mother, Theresa, was a prolific reader in her younger years, and particularly loved mysteries and suspense thrillers, which are still Janice’s favorites. Landry pays homage to both of her late parents in her books and national mental health advocacy work.
Growing up in Purcell’s Cove has had a lifelong, positive impact on the writer. Janice is still happiest near the ocean, sharing those moments now with her husband, Rob, and their daughter, Laura, her biggest cheerleaders.
Gil Miner, Evening Banquet Keynote
Born and raised in Eastern Ontario, Gil met his future wife – Kim – while studying at McGill University’s MacDonald Campus where he earned his Degree in Animal Science. After graduating university in 1985, Gil worked for 5 years with an animal feed company, before joining a chartered bank as an agrologist.
After 19 years in various roles at the Bank, Gil began his career at FCC in 2008 in Truro NS as a Relationship Manager. Prior to his current position, as Assistant Vice-President, Atlantic, Gil was the Senior Director, Atlantic District in Moncton NB, which included a two-year term at Corporate Office, Regina in both the Marketing & Credit departments.
Cher Mereweather, Friday Morning Keynote
Cher is the Agri-Food Sector Lead for AnthesisNorth America and one of Canada’s leaders in food and beverage industry sustainability. She has dedicated her 20-year career to enablingfood and beverage companies to embrace sustainability, purpose and circularity in order to create a more resilient food system.
Cher is a passionate advocate for a healthy lifestyle that is deeply connected to the natural environment. The food system became an obvious source of study and focus for her professional career, as food is the nexus between environment and health. What Cher stands for, is a world in which food and beverage products support both people and the planet. Specifically, Cher works with businesses to get clear on why they exist, what their purpose is beyond profit, and to provide them with the support needed to execute this strategy, so that lasting transformational change can happen.
Before founding Provision Coalition Inc., recently acquired by Anthesis Group, Cher’s career included time with the Guelph Food Technology Centre (now NSF International) where she established and directed the Sustainability Consulting Business Unit, and executive positions in environmental economics and policy with the Canadian agri-food think tank, the George Morris Centre. Cher holds a Bachelor and Master’s degree in Environmental Economics and Policy and is certified in both project and change management. Cher has also been awardedthe Canadian Grocer Generation Next award for her leadership, innovation and excellence in sustainability within the food and beverage industry.
Jana Hocken, Friday Afternoon Keynote
With a solid foundation as an engineer with Toyota, Jana brings more than 20 years of experience practicing, leading, teaching and implementing lean and continuous improvement culture and methodologies into companies globally. She has successfully helped hundreds of companies across Europe, America, Asia and Australasia, apply lean thinking to improve their operations. Jana has worked across most industry sectors including automotive, rail, aerospace, defence, healthcare, government, finance, IT and agriculture.
Since 2017 Jana has helped to bring lean concepts to farming, first implementing lean on her family’s 1,000 cow dairy farm in New Zealand. With proven results, she founded The LeanFarm Project to help create awareness of the significant benefits lean has in farming. Jana has now delivered LeanFarm workshops and speaking events to thousands of farmers across the world, helping them to start their lean journeys. In 2019 she published her book ‘The Lean Dairy Farm’ – a highly practical and relevant step by step guide that every farmer can use to apply lean principles on farm.
Dairy Farmers of Nova Scotia