Mark Wales, President
Mark Wales is currently serving in his second term as President of the OFA. Wales was originally elected OFA President at the 2011 Annual General Meeting after serving as Vice President since 2008. He was re-elected at the 2012 AGM. He previously served on the OFA Executive Committee when the OFA Board of Directors elected him at its inaugural meeting in 2007. Wales has served on the OFA Board since 1994.
He graduated from the University of Guelph in 1976 with a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture, and has been involved in diversified farming in the horticulture sector and tobacco ever since. He is a graduate of Class 6 of the Advanced Agricultural Leadership Program, and participated in the 2004 Nuffield Canada Scholarship program where he presented a project on "Alternative Crops to Replace Tobacco in Ontario".
Wales’ work with agricultural organizations began in the late 1980s when he delivered land stewardship workshops. His accomplishments include being elected Chair of the Elgin County Peer Review Committee for the Environmental Farm Plan, Chair of the Elgin Stewardship Council, President of the Garlic Growers’ Association of Ontario, President of the Elgin County Federation of Agriculture, and Chair of the Safety Nets Committee of the Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association.
He is a Director-at-Large of the Elgin County Federation of Agriculture and has been involved with the local federation for 20 years. This work led to his involvement with the OFA where he served as Chair of the Farm Finance, Trade and Taxation Committee. Wales serves as an agricultural representative on the Lake Erie Region Source Water Protection Committee, and is the only farmer on the Lake Simcoe Co-ordinating Committee. He is also currently the Vice-Chair of the Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Sector Council.
Wednesday, October 1
I will be in the office during the day and speaking at the Peel Federation of Agriculture Annual General Meeting in Caledon, ON in the evening.
Thursday, October 2
I will be in the office during the day and attending my local township council meeting in the evening.
Friday, October 3
I will be working part of the day from home.
Saturday, October 4
I will be attending the Farm and Food Care “Breakfast on the Farm” event in Newcastle, ON.
Monday, October 6
I will be attending a Conference Board of Canada HR conference in Toronto, ON all day. Also, I have a conference call for the National Labour Task Force on Agriculture and one for the Rehabilitation working group on changes to the Aggregate Resources Act.
Tuesday, October 7
I will be attending a meeting of the Greenbelt Plan working group in Toronto.
Wednesday, October 8
In the afternoon, Keith Currie and I will be meeting with Parks Canada and touring the site of the proposed Rouge National Urban Park.
In the evening, I will be attending the monthly meeting of the Elgin Federation of Agriculture in St. Thomas, ON.
Thursday, October 9
In the morning, I will be attending a meeting of the Waste Diversion Ontario stakeholders working group on tire recycling in Toronto. In the evening, I will be speaking at the Lanark Federation of Agriculture Annual General Meeting in Beckwith, ON.
Friday, October 10
I have a conference call early in the afternoon with the Chair of the Ontario energy Board and in the evening I will be attending, along with several board members, the Farm and Food Care's Agriculture night at the Toronto Argonaut's football game.
Tuesday, October 14
Chairing the OFA board meeting in Guelph, ON in the afternoon.
Wednesday, October 15
Chairing the OFA board meeting all day in Guelph.
Thursday, October 16
Attending the monthly OFVGA board meeting. In the evening, I will be attending my regular township council meeting in Aylmer, ON.
Friday, October 17
In the evening, I will be speaking at the Northumberland Federation of Agriculture Annual General Meeting in Warkworth, ON.
Tuesday-Thursday, October 21-23
Attending the fall Canadian Federation of Agriculture board meeting in Ottawa, ON and participating in the lobby day on Parliament Hill with federal MP's on the 23rd.
Tuesday, October 28
I will be attending a meeting of the Tire Recycling Working Group in Toronto in the morning. I have a conference call in the afternoon of the oversight committee for the National Bee Health testing lab in Alberta. I also have a meeting of the Aggregate working group on rehabilitation.
Wednesday, October 29
I will be participating with Union Gas and Enbridge on a breakfast panel at Queen's Park on the subject of natural gas. In addition, OFA board members will be meeting with MPP's during the day and participating at Queen's Park in a reception in the evening. I have a meeting scheduled with MMAH Minister Ted McMeekin and OMAFRA Minister Jeff Leal in the afternoon to discuss the proposed Food Belt.
Thursday, October 30
I will be chairing the OFA executive meeting in Guelph in the morning before participating in an Open for Business meeting at Stone Road in Guelph during the afternoon. We generally have 3 or 4 of these per year and this is where we bring 6 or more Ministries together to deal with fixing regulatory issues affecting our members.
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