Advisory Committees

The National Farmers Union has three Advisory Committees: the Women's Advisory Committee, the Youth Advisory Committee and the International Program Committee. Each NFU Region elects one person as its representative on each of these committees. For information about the work of these committees see the pages for Women, Youth and International.

Women’s Advisory Committee:

Katie Ward - Women's President

Woodlawn, ON
Phone (613) 797-0601
Email: ourfarmcsa@gmail.com
 
Katie Ward is a 9th generation family farmer from West Carleton-March, northwest of Ottawa. Along with her husband, Mathieu-Andre Chiasson, she raises sheep, pigs and chickens on pasture while running a small vegetable CSA in partnership with another NFU farmer.

Active in her NFU Local as well as the Region 3 council of the NFU along with the Women's Advisory Board, Katie is also a District Director in the Ontario Sheep Marketing Association and works with the West Carleton Healthy Food Coalition to promote community-owned food production infrastructure such as root cellars.

Shannon Jones - Women's Vice President

River Hebert, NS
Phone: (902) 251-2686
 
Shannon Jones is a first generation farmer in Nova Scotia where she runs Broadfork Farm with her partner Bryan. Together they make a livelihood by growing and selling organic vegetables, cut flowers, herbs, and seeds. They sell their products directly to their farmers’ market customers and to chefs. 
 
Shannon first became involved with the NFU through the NFU Youth retreats which were incredibly inspirational to her. Other NFU committees that Shannon has been involved with are the Women’s Caucus (as Region 1 Women’s Advisor), International Program Committee, Direct Marketing Committee, Membership Development Committee, and most recently, the Indigenous Solidarity Working Group.
 
Besides being an active and engaged member of the NFU, she also volunteers on other agricultural boards and committees including Canadian Organic Growers (COG), Organic Federation of Canada (OFC), Atlantic Canadian Organic Regional Network (ACORN), Coalition for Organics in NS (COINS), Cumberland Food Action Network (CFAN), Agrifutures NS/Grow NS, IFOAM North America (International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements), and she sits on the Canadian Organic Standards Technical Committee representing ACORN. 
 
Carina Phillips
Region 1 (Atlantic)
Morell, PEI
Phone: (902) 213-5862
 
Marcelle Paulin
Region 3 (Ontario)
Pass Lake, ON
Phone: (807) 977-1631
 
Marcelle is co-founder of Sleepy G Farm, an organic, small-scale farm in Northwestern Ontario.  She has been farming vegetables and beef with her husband in Pass Lake, 50 kms east of Thunder Bay since 2010.  They have been members of the NFU since their farm’s inception.  Marcelle is active in her NFU local as well as council member in Region 3.  She is passionate about producing, cooking, eating, and sharing good food.  Marcelle believes that farming is a professional occupation and that family farms are essential to achieving food sovereignty and creating vibrant rural communities.  She is a volunteer firefighter and first responder in Pass Lake and teaches Yoga at her local community centre.  
 
Lois Robson

Region 5 (Manitoba)
Deleau, MB 
Phone: (204) 858-2479
Email: ILrobson@xplornet.ca

Lois Robson grew up on a mixed farm in Grand Forks County, North Dakota. She then embarked on a teaching career working with special needs students in rural areas. She moved to Manitoba after meeting her future husband, Ian Robson at a Sustainable Agriculture conference. They have two daughters, Erica and Sonja. Lois served five years on the Board of Child and Family Services for Western Manitoba and is currently on the Advisory Board of Manitoba Farm, Rural and Northern Support Services. Along with Ian and Erica, Lois is an integral member of the family’s mixed grain and cattle farming operation at Deleau, MB.         

Marcella Pedersen

Region 6 (Saskatchewan)
Cut Knife, SK
Phone: (306) 398-2795
Email: gilmar@sasktel.net

Marcella Pedersen farms near Cut Knife, raising bees and chickens with her daughter, husband, his brothers and a sister-in-law. She has been with the NFU since 1971. She held positions of NFU local and district presidents, directors and secretaries (1970-1996); and Women’s Advisory for Region 6. Her NFU involvement has fanned out to WIN-S Women’s Information Network of Saskatchewan.

Marcella  is impressed that, with the NFU an individual can make a difference in policy, even the youth, which is where she started from.

 
Toby Malloy
Region 7 (Alberta)
Nanton, AB
Phone: (403) 601-9167
 
Toby and her husband, Lance, farm a part of his family’s home place in the Nanton area.  They grow grain, hay, vegetables and raise pastured heritage breed pigs. In addition, Toby is also a social worker and therapist. Toby believes in the family farm and its tremendous value in sustaining and creating healthy, inclusive and resilient individuals, families and communities. Toby’s interests include local food and food sovereignty. Toby was drawn to the NFU because she feels that it is an organization that exemplifies what can be achieved through a democratic process that is respectful and generative.
 
 
Julie Enman
Region 8 (BC)
Courtenay, BC 
Phone: (250) 871-6420

Julie lives on Vancouver Island as a part time farmer keeping bees and helping grow organic vegetables. Having done food activism in the North, Julie is particularly concerned with issues confronting our northernmost food producers and LGBTQ2 farmers, as well as putting a stop to Site C Dam (among other things). She often spends winters overseas working in international development on agriculture and other projects and writing for The Country Grind, a rural punk publication.

 

 

Youth Advisory Committee:

Stuart Oke - Youth President

St-Andre-Avéllin
Phone: 819-593-0626
Website: rootedoak.ca
 
Stuart Oke is a first generation farmer who lives and works outside St-Andre-Avellin,Quebec. He runs Rooted Oak farm, a vegetable farm operating on leased land with his partner Nikki. Together they grow and market their vegetables at farmer's markets and through their summer and winter CSA programs in Ottawa and the surrounding area. He has been an NFU member for 4 years and is a strong believer in the power of cooperative and collective action. He has been an active participant in coordinating membership development locally in Ontario as well as working nationally on the revised members handbook. As a young farmer himself he is looking forward to bringing his experience and energy to this position on the board and executive as well as helping to coordinate youth actions nationally.

Marta Reczek - Youth Vice-President

Chilliwack, BC

Marta grew up in Kingston, Ontario and after years of community work became increasingly interested in food security and farming. After finishing up a degree in Geography and Environmental Studies at Queen's University, she moved on from working at a local non-profit called Sustainable Kingston to working on organic vegetable farms in Lansdowne and Battersea. Meanwhile, she attended her first NFU convention 3 years ago and a youth retreat soon after. This has led to her involvement with the IPC and Membership Development Committee, and a growing commitment to strengthen the presence of young and aspiring farmers within the organization. Recently having moved to British Columbia, she is excited to create new connections and take on the work of Region 8.  

Bryan Dyck

Region 1 (Atlantic)
River Hebert, NS
Phone: (902) 251-2686
 
Bryan is a first generation farmer, operating Broadfork Farm with partner Shannon Jones in River Hebert, Nova Scotia. There, along with three (sometimes) helpful farm cats, they make a living selling organic vegetables and cut flowers at nearby Dieppe Market. Bryan is also involved with the board of his local County Federation of Agriculture, as the NFU currently has no registered local within Nova Scotia, something he hopes to see change in the near future.
 
Martin Boettcher
Region 3 (Ontario)
Brussels, ON
Phone: (519) 292-6085
 
Jeanette Sivilay
Region 5 (Manitoba)
Winnipeg, MB
 
Jeanette has been farming in urban and rural areas for the past 6 years, operating a small vegetable CSA as part of a co-operative with other young and aspiring farmers. As a first generation farmer her excitement comes from working closely with the land, and the creativity it cultivates.
 
In addition to her role as Region 5 Youth Advisor, Jeanette also works locally with Sharing the Table Manitoba, a network of small and direct market farmers, while completing her Masters thesis on food sovereignty in Manitoba.
 
Christopher Sanford Beck
Region 6 (Saskatchewan)
Cochin, SK
Phone:(306) 481-5654
 
Christopher Sanford Beck lives with his family on a small-scale, chemical free, mixed farm near Cochin, Saskatchewan. The farm is predominately food self-sufficient (meat, eggs, often milk, grain, vegetables) and its primary source of income comes from running a CSA, which serves the local area. Though Christopher is not a full time gardener or farmer, food issues are close to his heart. Before moving to join the Ternier/Burns farm, he and his family had lived in Saskatoon, where his mother was an avid gardener and the program director at CHEP Good Food Inc. Christopher is new to the NFU, having been initiated to the organization at the 2016  Region 6 Convention, where he was selected to become youth adviser. He is still learning what that role entails, but he hopes that his passion for writing, social issues, and food can come in handy. Christopher is currently homeschooling and although he is unsure where life will lead him, he wants food and food justice to remain a part of his life.
 
Josh Bateman
Region 7 (Alberta)
Edmonton, AB
Phone: (780) 237-1993
 
Josh’s path towards farming began with an undergraduate degree in Nutrition and Food Sciences and Food Policy where the topics of environmental stewardship and social justice captured his attention. During university Josh gained knowledge on the politics and practices in the food system and was able to enrich his knowledge through sustainable agriculture trips to India and Japan. After graduating, Josh worked on an organic, biodynamic farm in Australia and then returned home to Alberta for the farming season to continue learning and building his skill-set at Prairie Gold Pastured Meats and Steel Pony Farm in Red Deer, Alberta. Josh hopes to bring his passion for social and ecological responsibility to the National Farmers Union in order to contribute towards a sustainable food future. 
 
Graham Bradley
Region 8 (British Columbia)
Gabriola, BC
Phone: (250) 891-7900
 

International Program Committee

Jean-Eudes Chiasson
Region 1 (Atlantic)
Rogersville, NB
Phone: (506) 775-6033

Jean-Eudes Chiasson est un producteur agricole de la région de Rogersville au Nouveau-Brunswick, membre de la Cooperative, la ferme terre partagé avec  sa fille Rébeka et gendre Kevin. Engagé dans la production de fruit et  légume Bio et de viande sans OGM.

Jean-Eudes Chiasson is a farmer from Rogersville New Brunswick , member of the coop, La ferme terre partagé with his daughter Rébeka and son-in-law Kevin. They produce organic fruit and vegetables and GMO-free meat.

Maureen Bostock
Region 3 (Ontario)
 
Jeanette Sivilay
Region 5 (Manitoba)
Winnipeg, MB
 
Jeanette has been farming in urban and rural areas for the past 6 years, operating a small vegetable CSA as part of a co-operative with other young and aspiring farmers. As a first generation farmer her excitement comes from working closely with the land, and the creativity it cultivates. In addition to her role as Region 5 Youth Advisor, Jeanette also works locally with Sharing the Table Manitoba, a network of small and direct market farmers, while completing her Masters thesis on food sovereignty in Manitoba.
 
Dixie Green
Region 6  (Saskatchewan)
Swift Current, SK
Phone: (306) 773-6305
 
 
Toby Malloy
Region 7 (Alberta)
Nanton, AB
Phone: (403) 601-9167
 
Toby and her husband, Lance, farm a part of his family’s home place in the Nanton area.  They grow grain, hay, vegetables and raise pastured heritage breed pigs. In addition, Toby is also a social worker and therapist. Toby believes in the family farm and its tremendous value in sustaining and creating healthy, inclusive and resilient individuals, families and communities. Toby’s interests include local food and food sovereignty. Toby was drawn to the NFU because she feels that it is an organization that exemplifies what can be achieved through a democratic process that is respectful and generative.
 
Graham Bradley
Region 8 (British Columbia)
Gabriola, BC
Phone: (250) 891-7900
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

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