Source: Beef Farmers of Ontario
The Beef Farmers of Ontario (BFO) congratulates past president, Stan Eby, on his formal induction into Ontario’s Agricultural Hall of Fame which took place by virtual ceremony this afternoon. Known by many, Eby’s lasting legacy to the Ontario and Canadian beef sectors is his collaborative leadership style, his national lens for seeking solutions to industry challenges, and the model he created for crisis management.
Stan Eby, a beef farmer born and raised in Bruce County, led both the Ontario Cattlemen’s Association (now known as the Beef Farmers of Ontario) and the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association (CCA) in the early 2000’s. During his tenure, Ontario’s beef industry went through two significant upheavals including the Walkerton water crisis in May, 2000 and the discovery of BSE in Canada in May, 2003. During the Walkerton crisis, Eby, as both a local farmer and industry leader, conducted hundreds of meetings and interviews promoting farmers’ stewardship of the land and the environmental sustainability of the beef industry. With borders closed to Canadian beef because of BSE, Eby’s leadership helped CCA develop a plan to reposition the Canadian beef cattle industry which included expansion of processing facilities, development of support programs and other work to provide stability to the industry. Eby also spent many hours traveling to the U.S. to work with counterparts on reopening borders to trade.
“Stan’s quiet, calm and steadfast leadership qualities were vital in steering both organizations through such a tumultuous time in the Canadian beef sector,” shares Rob Lipsett, BFO President. “He proved over and over again his ability to maintain a steady hand, to foresee and overcome barriers, and to inspire a team nationwide to work together and not give up.”
BFO also recognizes the important work of the late Dr. Terry O’Connor who was also inducted into the OAHF this afternoon. O’Connor operated a successful veterinary practice in Stouffville for over 25 years, establishing firm credentials as a caring and capable veterinarian. He then became the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food’s regional veterinarian and program manager, helping to make significant contributions to Ontario’s beef and swine industries. He oversaw operations of the Beef Cattle Financial Protection Program and was at the forefront of identifying animal welfare issues at stockyards and sales barns and working to develop acceptable levels of care.
Stan Eby was nominated by the Beef Farmers of Ontario and the late Dr. Terry O’Connor was nominated by the Ontario Federation of Agriculture and the York Region Federation of Agriculture whose nomination BFO was pleased to formally support. To qualify for this prestigious recognition, inductees must have demonstrated visionary leadership, innovation, and entrepreneurship as well as leaving a lasting legacy to the advancement of agriculture in Ontario.
BFO would like to thank the Ontario Agricultural Hall of Fame Association for their ongoing efforts to acknowledge, record, and preserve the contributions made by leaders to the growth and development of Ontario’s agriculture and agri-food industry.