Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal Awarded to Three Passionate and Persistent Canola Growers

Passion and Commitment to Canola Industry

The Canola industry is fortunate to have exemplary farmers. Here in Manitoba, three canola farmers have been recognized for their passion and commitment to the canola industry and to Manitoba agriculture.

Manitoba Canola Growers Association (MCGA) vice president Brian Chorney, director Ernie Sirski, and past director Bruce Dalgarno were recently awarded the prominent Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal. Their dedication to industry has surpassed the local level—all three have served on MCGA, Canadian Canola Growers Association and the Canola Council of Canada (CCC) at some point in their careers.

60th Anniversary Medals Honour Achievements

2012 marked the 60th anniversary of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s accession to the Throne as Queen of Canada. According to the Government of Canada, the commemorative 60th anniversary medals “serve to honour significant contributions and achievements by Canadians”.

Senator JoAnne Buth and the Honourable Phillip Lee personally awarded the medals to our three canola growers and 12 other deserving individuals this past October at the Government House in Winnipeg. Senator Buth was allocated 30 of the medals to distribute. The passion, persistence and professionalism each individual demonstrated stood out in her eyes.

Senator Buth Selects from Agriculture

Her personal selection process included talking to her numerous contacts within the industry and in Manitoba, to develop a list of those who have made substantial contributions to Manitoba agriculture. “I thought of people I had worked with and others were suggested to me,” she recalls. The list consisted of farmers and people from within the grain industry. “My focus was on agriculture because that is my background and it is important to me that they be represented.”

She emphasizes one quality all three medal recipients share: persistence.I looked for people who had become champions by being persistent and who had followed through on things,” she explains. “I believe that is how you make a contribution.”

Farmer Ernie Sirski

Senator Buth met Ernie Sirski when he was a director on the board of the CCC, where she was previously president. Ernie brought with him strong board governance skills that she admired and was good for the industry. “What impressed me about him was his ability to see the big picture and work cooperatively across the chain,” she says.

Farmer Bruce Dalgarno

Senator Buth also met Bruce Dalgarno during his time with the Canola Council of Canada board and was impressed with him right away. They worked on the Pesticide Harmonization Project together. “He took a lead from a farmer’s point of view and when he presented to regulatory officials in Canada and the US and he did a remarkable job” she recalls.  Manitoba canola farmers know Bruce for playing a crucial role in establishing the canola check-off, which is further proof of his persistence. Senator Buth describes his perseverance in one sentence, “he sees a challenge and he doesn’t give up.”

Farmer Brian Chorney

Brian Chorney’s passion and background in biofuels caught the senator’s attention. She acknowledges he has done a remarkable job in advocating the alternative use for canola. She worked with him on the Canadian Renewable Fuels Association on which she is proud to report, “he was a tremendous representative of canola growers.”

Farmer Passion

All farmers are brilliant, passionate and persistent at heart. It’s part of what makes them successful. Having the Government of Canada recognize the contributions of three from our very own canola family is as rewarding to our farmers, our community, and our industry as it is for Brian, Ernie and Bruce themselves.

Diamond Jubilee Winners with Senator Buth

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