In a recent election, Drew Spoelstra, a Binbrook-based dairy and crop farmer from the southeastern corner of Hamilton, was elected as the new president of the Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA). Having previously served on the OFA board as the director representing farmers from Halton, Hamilton/Wentworth, and Niagara since 2013, Spoelstra most recently held the role of Vice President.
Expressing his honour at the appointment, Spoelstra stated, “I’m honored to serve Ontario farmers as the president of the Ontario Federation of Agriculture, and I appreciate the trust that my fellow board members have placed in me to lead this organization.” He emphasized the crucial role of agriculture in the provincial economy, addressing issues such as food security, climate change, housing, and healthcare.
Spoelstra, who farms with his family, milk cows, cultivates corn, soybeans, wheat, and hay, and raises beef cattle and Clydesdale horses. Additionally, he operates a dealership for Pride Seeds and is actively involved in agricultural volunteering. As the new OFA president, Spoelstra succeeds Peggy Brekveld, who led the organization for the past three years.
Joining Spoelstra on the OFA executive team are Vice Presidents Sara Wood and Paul Vickers, along with Executive Member Ethan Wallace. Sara Wood, a fourth-generation farmer from Perth County, operates a broiler chicken farm and grows crops with her family. Paul Vickers, a dairy farmer from Meaford, represents Bruce and Grey counties on the OFA board. Ethan Wallace, a dairy farmer near Seaforth, represents farmers in Huron and Perth counties.
Newly elected directors to the OFA board include Brian Crews (Zone 12), Clint Cameron (Zone 11), and Andrea McCoy-Naperstkow (Zone 8), replacing exiting directors Bruce Buttar, Jackie-Kelly Pemberton, and Jennifer Doelman, respectively.
Angela Cammaert, a fifth-generation beef and crop farmer from Elgin County, joins the board as a new Director-at-Large, succeeding Peggy Brekveld. Cammaert secured her position through a successful election against candidates Andy Kuyvenhoven, Julie Danen, and William Orford.
Welcoming the new directors, Spoelstra expressed gratitude to the candidates who participated in the election process and thanked the members for their engagement and interest in shaping the future of the OFA.
Matt Weingarden, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Tilbury Times Reporter, Tilbury Times Reporter