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To The Haldimand Press
The Haldimand Federation of Agriculture (HFA) is pleased to welcome Will Stoneman as the new Member Service Representative (MSR) for the Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA).
He will officially take over from Janet Licskai on December 15, 2018 as the MSR covering the counties of Brant, Haldimand and Norfolk. The board wishes Janet a happy, healthy, and relaxing retirement.
Will is a third-generation farmer, born and raised in Haldimand County. His grandfather bought the original home farm in the 1940s and started milking cows in the Tyneside area.
Will graduated from Mohawk College in 2009 with a diploma in civil engineering. He worked out west for five years in the oil fields, but farming called him home to Haldimand in 2015.
Together with his parents and brother, the Stonemans operate a beef cow-calf enterprise, grow hay and cash crop, and do some custom work on the side. In 2015 they decided to enter the direct market, selling freezer beef to local customers.
Will is pleased to be working for OFA in his new role as the MSR: “From where I stand in the industry, I can see a lot of the issues farmers face from a grassroots level. I want to work with OFA to be that resource to help resolve issues. The role of OFA is to be the sounding board for Ontario farmers. To stand up for us when we have issues in rural Ontario.”
Will is a stanch supporter of 4-H as he believes club members learn leadership skills from an early age and “this gives kids confidence to take charge and lead”. He was a member of the 4-H Beef Club for 10 years and had the chance to compete at the Royal Winter Fair for eight years. He also participated in the Canadian National 4-H & Youth Judging Competition at Canadian Western Agribition. This provided him with a chance to hone his livestock judging skills and see how he “scored” against the official judges.
Will is also a director on the Haldimand Cattlemen’s Association and firmly believes that participating in ag awareness programs such as Agstravaganza is important. He was surprised by how much the students know and was impressed by their keen sense of curiosity. He explained, “It’s a chance to give Grade 5 students a taste of what rural Ontario is all about” and learn about farming in Haldimand County.
Circling back to OFA, he added that he is looking forward to expanding his knowledge on different aspects of farming in Brant and Norfolk and getting to know area producers.
Will can be reached at 905-746-4071 or firstname.lastname@example.org.