Markham Fair’s Elaine Rennie passes the gavel to the new incoming 2017 OAAS President.  We are very proud of Elaine having represented Markham Fair during a time of great change within the Provincial Association.  The following text is quoted from the OAAS website.

Russell Agricultural Society representative and past Board Member from District 1, Judy McFaul, was installed as the Ontario Association of Agricultural Societies (OAAS) President for a one-year term at the annual Convention in Toronto February 16 to 18, 2017. Over 150 voting Agricultural Societies confirmed McFaul’s position and also accepted a newly revised Constitution.

“We are pleased that our membership supports the recommended changes presented to them,” said McFaul. “Board Members and Districts have been working towards a new structure, and we appreciate their vision and hard work.”

Member Societies approved additional changes to the Constitution which follows up on last year’s constitutional changes that resulted in a move to 15-member Board of Directors. This change will take effect February 2017 and is the result of a working governance committee supported by staff of the Rural Ontario Institute.

Brian Slaughter of Forest Agricultural Society, Doug Yeo of Bayfield Agricultural Society and Elaine Rennie of Markham Fair will join McFaul’s Executive as First and Second Vice President and Past President respectively. They will be joined on the Board of Directors by the elected Provincial Directors from the 15 Districts from across Ontario. The Provincial Directors are Liz O’Gorman-Smit, Blair Machan, Janet Torrance, Zach Prescott, Linda Murray, Heather Dillon, Beth Howell-Vervaecke, Ron McKay, Colin Pool, Wayne Pfeffer, Pat Munroe, Jane Armstrong, Melissa Johnson, Leonard Riopel, and Randy Creighton.

The convention attracted over 1000 delegates including over 90 fair Ambassadors. The event featured seminars on topics including premises identification, promotion and marketing, insurance, and an E-coli Workshop.

Keynote speaker was Ag blogger Andrew Campbell on “Standing on the Front Lines of Ag Awareness.”  His message on agvocacy (agricultural advocacy) resonated with the delegates.  He stressed that consumers deserve to have accurate information presented and available to them. Top prizes were awarded in provincial quilt, photography, poster, cookie, and bread competitions.