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Farm Credit Canada seeking outstanding women in agriculture


November 27, 2008
By Farm Credit Canada

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November 25, 2008, Guelph, Ont. –
Farm Credit Canada (FCC) is seeking nominations for the 2009 Rosemary
Davis Award, which honours Canadian women for their leadership and
commitment to agriculture.

November 25, 2008, Guelph, Ont. – Farm Credit Canada (FCC) is seeking nominations for the 2009 Rosemary Davis Award , which honours Canadian women for their leadership and commitment to agriculture.

Last spring, Debbie Coke, a farmer, feed specialist inspector and agriculture advocate from Dresden, Ont., was one of five Canadian women who received the award.

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“There are a lot of women across Canada making a difference in this industry and it is great to be recognized,” says Coke. “My hope is that this award will pave the way for other institutions across Canada who give out achievement awards to consider that women haven’t always been at the forefront when it comes to being honoured for their work in agriculture even though they have and continue to play a key role.”

Now, FCC is looking for five more women who deserve recognition for their achievements. She could be an agriculture producer, agribusiness operator, teacher, veterinarian, researcher, community builder, visionary, volunteer or have some other valuable connection to agriculture. The nomination period for the Rosemary Davis Award opened Nov. 24.

“Over the past two years, we’ve honoured 10 wonderful women who haves significantly contributed to agriculture in this country – women like Debbie,” says Kellie Garrett, senior vice-president of strategy, knowledge and reputation at FCC. “We’re excited to offer this award again. Part of the challenge is having women see themselves as deserving this kind of recognition. That’s why people can nominate someone and self-nomination is also encouraged.”

Candidates are judged on how they demonstrate leadership, give back to their community and Canadian agriculture, display their passion for agriculture, as well as their vision for the future of the industry.

The Rosemary Davis Award was created and named after a successful Canadian agribusiness owner and operator and the first female chair of the FCC board of directors.

“Agriculture is an important business in this country and women have always contributed to the success of the industry,” says Garrett. “At the same time, many women have worked quietly behind the scenes. More and more, there are innovative women who are showing other women that agriculture is a viable career option. That’s very important for the future of the industry.”

The winners receive a free trip to Boston to the 2009 Simmons School of Management leadership conference in May – http://www.simmons.edu/leadership/.

In additional to Debbie, other winners from last year were:
• Claire Désaulniers, a dairy farmer, business manager and farm women’s advocate from St-Tite, Que.; 
• Elspeth McLean-Wile, a dairy farmer and entrepreneur from Wileville, N.S.
• Lilliane Sabiston, a farmer, women’s advocate and volunteer from Kelliher, Sask.; and
• Marie Logan, a farmer, 4-H and community leader from Lomond, Alb.

Rosemary Davis winners must be 21 years of age and actively involved in agriculture. Online applications have to be submitted before midnight Jan. 26, 2009 to the Farm Credit Canada website at www.FCCRosemaryDavisAward.ca. Previous nominees who did not win last year can reapply. Call 1-888-332-3301 for more information.