Influential Women in Canadian Agriculture

Influential Women in Agriculture Summit 2020
October 20, 2021 at 12:00pm ET

Leadership Panel Discussion

Peggy Brekveld
Gillian Flies
Michele Rogalsky

Moderator: Darlene McBain, manager of industry relations, Farm Credit Canada

The leadership panel will discuss what effective leadership looks like in Canadian agriculture. What does it mean to be a good leader and how do leaders navigate the setbacks and wins that come with working in agriculture?

Peggy Brekveld

Peggy Brekveld is vice-president of the Ontario Federation of Agriculture, and her family operates Woodstar Farms, a dairy farm near Thunder Bay, Ont. She’s a graduate of the Rural Ontario Institute’s Advanced Agricultural Leadership Program (AALP), and is currently also vice-president of the Agricultural Adaptation Council. Agricultural advocate and the bridge between ag and government are the roles Peggy is proud to hold.

Gillian Flies

Gillian Flies is the co-founder and co-owner of The New Farm, an organic vegetable farm in Creemore, Ont., and president of Canadian Organic Growers. She spent over a decade working in international political development and management consulting on four continents before buying her current farm in 2005. Gillian is a staunch supporter of regenerative agriculture and research in minimum-till vegetable production, conducting a farmer-led research project into the use of tarps to kill vegetable residue and replace tillage.

Michele Rogalsky

Michele Rogalsky is the director of the University of Manitoba’s School of Agriculture and a Canadian Agricultural Safety Association (CASA) board member. She is also responsible for the administration of the university’s Agricultural Diploma program; she led a review of the program in 2018, updating the program to reflect changes in agriculture. Her ability to build relationships and commitment to the future of agriculture are widely recognized.

Darlene McBain

Darlene McBain is manager of Industry Relations at Farm Credit Canada. She works closely with various partners, associations and stakeholders to further help grow the agriculture and food industry across Canada. Darlene was born and raised on a poultry farm outside of Quebec City. With farming in her heart and her passion for the food industry, Darlene earned a degree in agricultural science at Laval University. Darlene has over 20 years of experience working in the agri-food sector in various roles.  She has a genuine interest in building relationships and truly enjoys connecting people and coaching others to succeed and become the best version of themselves.