M.D. of Taber seeking BMO Farm Family Award nominations

Nominations are currently open for the 2024 BMO Farm Family Award and will be open until December 20.

“The BMO Farm Family Award aims to recognize and celebrate the contributions and achievements of farm families across Canada,” said Jorden Holst, Agricultural Fieldman for the M.D. of Taber. “It was created to honour these families for their dedication, innovation, and significant impact on agriculture and their local communities.”

Holst says that the BMO Farm Family Award serves as a platform to acknowledge the invaluable role of farm families in sustaining agriculture and fostering community development. The BMO Farm Family Award, Holst says, has been in existence for a considerable duration, honouring farm families for several years.

“It helps raise awareness about the challenges and successes faced by these families, encouraging continued support and appreciation for our agricultural sector,” said Holst.

Interested parties, Holst says, can nominate eligible farm families by applying online at https://mdtaber. and by outlining the family’s history, achievements, and contributions to agriculture and their community. There is no limit to the number of nominations the MD of Taber can receive from the public each year. Holst says that families eligible for the BMO Farm Family Award need to be actively involved in farming, demonstrate sustainable agricultural practices, and contribute positively to their community.

The Agricultural Fieldman and/or the Assistant Agricultural Fieldman, Holst says, are responsible for reviewing each nomination to ensure that the nominated families qualify for the award and the final nominee is determined based on criteria such as the family’s farming practices, community involvement, innovations, and overall impact. People interested in the process, Holst says, can view the Calgary Stampede and Bank of Montreal Farm Family Award Policy at the following link:

The MD of Taber’s Agricultural Service Board, Holst says, will then assess these nominations to select the most deserving recipient and the final recipient will be honoured at the Municipal District of Taber’s Agricultural Service Board meeting and invited to the Calgary Stampede, joining exemplary farming families from across the province.

According to the M.D. of Taber website, the previous winners are as follows:

1997 – Randy & Anne Luehr

1998 – Huvanaars Seed Farms Ltd.

1999 – Stamp’s Select Seeds

2000 – Brian & Evelyn Conrad

2001 – No nominee

2002 – Nakamura Farms Ltd.

2003 – Geremia Farms

2004 – Oseen Farms

2005 – DeGroot Farms – John & Sandra DeGroot & Family

2006 – Welsh Family Farm – James, Cindy & Jason Welsh

2007 – Midland Colony, Jon Kleinsasser & Family

2008 – Gouw Quality Onions, Casey Sr., Casey Jr. & Kyle Gouw

2009 – Tri R Farms, Tim & Patricia Redekop

2010 – No nominee

2011 – No nominee

2012 – Dry Coulee, Doug & Anita Jensen

2013 – Zelenka Farms Ltd., Robert & Carol Zelenka & Family

2014 – Thistle Ridge Ranch, Ben & Carol Tams Family

2015 – Pepneck Family Farm, Pepneck Family

2016 – Molnar’s Taber Corn & Pumpkins, James & Jennifer Molnar Family

2017 – Reynolds Family Farm, Murray and Helen Reynolds

2018 – Tall Land & Cattle Company, Tom Machacek Family

2019 – Linrich Farms Ltd., Richard and Linda Huvenaars

2020 – Torsius Tater Farms, Bill Torsius Family

2021 – Covid 19

2022 – Brent & Lynda Unruh

2023 – Chin Ridge Farms, Lawrence Barany Family

“As an agricultural-based community, the Municipal District of Taber views the BMO Farm Family Award as an excellent opportunity to showcase and appreciate the hard work, resilience, and contributions of local farm families,” said Holst. “It serves as a source of pride for the region, highlighting the agricultural heritage and the dedication of our residents. The Municipal District of Taber is proud of its agricultural roots and values the collaboration with the Calgary Stampede and BMO Bank of Montreal to present the award, recognizing the importance of partnerships in honouring and supporting the agricultural community.”

Heather Cameron, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Taber Times