Speaker Biographies

Jeff Ansell, Jeff Ansell and Associates

Jeff has created a unique process for people to be compelling communicators, whether dealing with the media, answering challenging questions or facing a crisis. Jeff is the author of When the Headline Is You: An Insider's Guide to Handling the Media.

As a media trainer, Jeff is brought in on tough, high profile, no-win situations, including the Erin Brockovich case. During the BP oil spill, Jeff counseled BP's partner in the Gulf disaster. He also provided crisis communications counsel for the Vancouver Olympics, and has trained White House spokespeople.

Prior to his consulting career, Jeff was an investigative journalist. In this role he revealed abuse taking place in a nursing home resulting in the closure of the home and amendments to the Ontario Nursing Home Act. He also spent a year posing as a drug addict and a year capturing Nazi war criminals.

As a reporter, Jeff was honoured with the Radio and Television News Directors Association Award for the Most Significant Contribution to the Improvement of News Gathering in Canada and he was nominated for the Governor-General’s Award for public service in journalism.

Wanting to build on what he learned as a journalist, Jeff moved into public relations and served as senior vice president of Hill and Knowlton, where he created the company's media training department in Canada. Jeff has been an instructor of the Dealing with an Angry Public program at Harvard Law School and lectures annually in the Negotiation curriculum at Harvard Business School.

Edouard Asnong, Chair NFACC

Edouard has long been involved in the agriculture sector, taking over his family’s commercial hog finishing operation in the mid-1970s.

In 1985, Edouard began to represent the interests of hog farmers, serving as a Director with the Fédération des producteurs de porcs du Québec (FPPQ) for the region of St-Hyacinthe. He was 1st Vice-President of the FPPQ for over ten years. Nationally, he served as President of the Canadian Pork Council from 1997 through to 2004, and as 1st Vice-President from 2004 to 2006.

Edouard currently holds several national positions. He is the Chair of Canada Pork International and has been Chair of the National Farm Animal Care Council for the past six years. Edouard also served as Chair of the Canadian Pork Council’s Animal Care Committee during the time the Animal Care Assessment tool was developed and implemented.

He and his wife Micheline reside in Pike River, Québec.

Fred Baker, sheep producer and NFACC sheep industry representative

Fred was born and raised on a large mixed/dairy farm in eastern Ontario. After completing a degree in ecology and sustainability from Brock University, he completed an enjoyable 37-year career with the Federal Government managing a large departmental library while simultaneously managing a 400 head sheep operation on the family farm.

First elected to the Ontario Sheep Marketing Agency in 1984, he served as Chair of OSMA from 1988 to 2004 and served with the Canadian Sheep Federation including a period as Chair from 2002 to 2006.

Following retirement from the federal government and sheep politics in 2009, Fred continues to farm both crops and market lambs and has represented the sheep industry on NFACC on behalf of the Canadian Sheep Federation. Fred is also an avid gardener, putterer and man about town.

Darrell Dalton, Interim Registrar, Alberta Veterinary Medical Association

Darrell began working with the Alberta Veterinary Medical Association (ABVMA) in 2007. He served as Deputy Registrar from 2008 to 2013 before accepting the position as interim Registrar this past February. He works closely with industry organizations, the provincial government and regulators through the ABVMA and the Alberta Farm Animal Care (AFAC) Association to promote responsible, humane animal care in the livestock industry.

In May of 2012, he was named to the NFACC board and executive to represent the provincial farm animal councils across Canada.

Darrell was born and raised in Calgary, attended the University of Alberta for Pre-vet, and graduated from Western College of Veterinary Medicine in 1980. He established a Standardbred racehorse practice in Alberta for six years, then moved to Red Deer and started a pleasure horse practice where he practiced for the next 22 years.

Darrell and his wife have four children and currently live in Strathcona County.

Tim Faveri, Director, Sustainability and Responsibility, Tim Hortons Inc.

Tim leads Tim Hortons sustainability and responsibility initiatives and activities. He is responsible for cross-functional execution of the company’s sustainability and responsibility strategy including stakeholder engagement, sustainability reporting, and all consumer facing environmental initiatives.

Tim also acts as the chair of Tim Hortons internal Animal Welfare Working Group and leads engagement with the agriculture industry and other stakeholders on animal welfare issues.

Sonya Fiorini, Senior Director, Corporate Social Responsibility, Loblaw

Sonya joined George Weston Limited, parent company of Loblaw Companies Limited in 1998 working in Environmental Affairs where she was responsible for managing the companies Environmental Management System and performed risk assessments across the country.

In 2008, Sonya joined Corporate Social Responsibility at Loblaw Companies as Sr. Director. In this role, Sonya is responsible for championing CSR across the business, implementing sustainable initiatives and developing the annual CSR report. Prior to joining Loblaw, Sonya was Director of a charitable organization and upon completion of her degree, worked at the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority as a Watershed Field Technician. Sonya has a Specialized Honours degree in Environmental Studies.

Kristen Kelderman, Farm Animal Care Coordinator, Farm and Food Care Ontario

Kristen is the Farm Animal Care Coordinator for Farm and Food Care, which represents thousands of farmers and associated businesses to provide credible information on food and farming.

Kristen grew up in Napanee where she has been active on her family’s dairy farm since she was a young girl. She graduated from the University of Guelph receiving her Bachelor of Science in Agriculture from the Ontario Agriculture College in 2011. Kristen enjoys running, cooking and still travels home whenever she can to do chores and milk the cows.

Ryder Lee, Manager of Federal Provincial Relations, Canadian Cattlemen’s Association

Ryder has been based in Ottawa working for the Canadian Cattlemen's Association (CCA) since 2005. As Manager of Federal Provincial Relations his focus is animal care, domestic agriculture policy, Ottawa lobby activities with CCA’s John Masswohl and liaison with provincial member associations.

NFACC's second formal meeting was one of the first meetings Ryder attended on CCA's behalf. He has been an NFACC board and executive member since 2010. Ryder is also the industry liaison for the Beef Code of Practice renewal and is a member of the beef Code Development Committee.

Ryder still has a small interest in the family's ranch in southern Saskatchewan where his brother is now doing the hands on animal care.

Crystal Mackay, Executive Director, Farm and Food Care Ontario

Crystal is the Executive Director for Farm & Food Care, which represents thousands of farmers and associated businesses to provide credible information on food and farming.

Crystal was raised on a beef and dairy farm in the Ottawa Valley. She graduated from the University of Guelph with a degree in Animal Science. Crystal is also a graduate of the Advanced Agricultural Leadership Program, and the George Morris Centre Executive Development Program. She enjoys spending time with her young family and playing hockey whenever she gets the chance!

Ron Maynard, Ron Maynard, dairy producer and board member, Dairy Farmers of Canada

Ron is a partner in a dairy farm in Tyne Valley P.E.I. He joined the family farm in 1982 and expanded from 25 milking cows to the present 150.

A McGill University graduate, Ron has been actively involved in the dairy industry at the provincial and national levels. He has been President of the P.E.I. Dairy Producers and Chair of the P.E.I. Milk Marketing Board. At the national level, Ron was a member of the Board of Directors of the Dairy Bureau of Canada before serving on the Board of Directors of Dairy Farmers of Canada in 1995. He was re-appointed to DFC in 2000. He was elected to the Executive Committee in July 2008 and chairs DFC’s Sustainable Development Task Force.

Ron participated on the Code of Practice Development committee for dairy from 2007 to 2009. He is currently on the development of the related animal welfare assessment program and part of the DFC producer committee driving the proAction Initiative.

Ron and his wife Liz have three daughters.

Ed Pajor, Professor of Animal Welfare and Ethology at the University of Calgary, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine

Ed is Professor of Animal Welfare and Ethology at the University of Calgary (U of C), Faculty of Veterinary Medicine. He also serves as Leader of the Pain and Animal Welfare Research Group. This is a multi-disciplinary group dedicated to understanding basic pain mechanisms, as well as discovering ways to minimizing animal pain and maximizing welfare.

During his career, Ed has served on numerous committees and is often invited to present to national and international audiences. Ed is recognized internationally for his research in the areas of swine, dairy and poultry behavior and welfare as well as expertise in animal welfare standards and legislation. He has served on the Editorial Boards of the Journal of Animal Science as well as Applied Animal Behavior Science and as the US representative to the International Society of Applied Ethology. Ed has been a member of McDonald’s Advisory Council for over 10 years. He also advises the US National Pork Board, National Farm Animal Care Council, Certified Humane, Alberta Farm Animal Care, and the Calgary Stampede.

Prior to joining the U of C, Ed worked at Purdue University in the Department of Animal Sciences where he also served as Director of the Animal Welfare Center at Purdue. He is a graduate of the University of Waterloo with a Honors Co-op B.Sc Degree in Biology. In addition he earned a MS. and PhD. degree in biology from McGill University specializing in Animal Behavior. He finalized his training with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada.

Ed currently resides in Calgary, Alberta with his wife Julie and their 2 children.

Stephani Roy McCallum, Dialogue Partners Inc.

Stephani is the Managing Director of Dialogue Partners Inc. Stephani specializes in bringing people together in situations of high emotion, conflict and controversy and has an international track record for success in supporting people and organizations to move forward on challenging issues. She has worked on complex issues ranging from indigenous rights, participatory budgeting, education, land use, health care, transportation, natural disasters, nuclear waste and environmental issues, and is the recipient of a number of national and international awards for her ground-breaking work. She has worked across Canada at the national, provincial and local level, and in the U.S.A., Australia and Europe.

Stephani has a background in Alternative Dispute Resolution, Outrage Management, Community Development, Native Studies and Authentic Leadership. She is a Certified Professional Facilitator with the International Association of Facilitators (IAF) and was the 2008 global President of the International Association for Public Participation (IAP2). She is a licensed trainer for IAP2 of the Certificate in Public Participation, an Assessor and Coach of new candidate trainers for IAP2, as well as lead developer and trainer of IAP2’s Emotion, Outrage & Public Participation program. In addition, Stephani regularly teaches, speaks and writes on advanced issues and innovations in the engagement field.

Caroline Ramsay, Coordinator, Animal Care Assessment Framework, NFACC

Caroline’s interest in agriculture stemmed from an early career as a chef. From there, she worked on farms in Ontario and Alberta and studied agriculture at the University of British Columbia obtaining a B.Sc. (with honours) in 2007.

From 2007 to 2010 she worked with the BC SPCA’s farm animal department assisting with all aspects of ‘SPCA Certified’, a farm certification and food labelling program. Since 2011, Caroline has held two contracts with the National Farm Animal Care Council. The first, as Equine Code Development Secretary - a role that involves facilitating the work of an 18-person committee developing the revised equine Code of Practice. The second, as Coordinator of the Animal Care Assessment Framework, a project focused on establishing a common, credible process for groups to follow when developing an animal care assessment program. Caroline coordinates all aspects of this unique project under the direction of a committee that brings together staff from four commodity associations, auditors, researchers, animal welfare advocates, and representatives from the retail and processor sectors.

Caroline is currently pursuing a Masters in Public Policy at Simon Fraser University. She is an Articling Agrologist with the B.C. Institute of Agrologists and lives in Vancouver.

Catherine Scovil, Associate Executive Director, Canadian Pork Council

Catherine has worked for over 20 years in the agriculture association field and is currently the Associate Executive Director of the Canadian Pork Council (CPC). During her time at the CPC, Catherine has facilitated the development and implementation of two core national hog industry programs and their delivery structures: CQA, the on-farm food safety program and ACA, the Animal Care Assessment initiative. She also works on risk management and international trade.

Catherine has a B.A. in Economics from the University of Western Ontario and a M.Sc. in Agricultural Economics from the University of Guelph. She has also recently completed the Management Development Program for Women at the Sprott School of Business at Carleton University in Ottawa.

Jeff Spooner, PhD, Animal Welfare Program, University of British Columbia & consultant

Jeff is a social scientist who studies cultural beliefs, values and attitudes surrounding ethical conflicts. He is particularly interested in supporting efforts to identify and integrate shared views.

Jeff spent years working internationally in the field of human medicine where he conducted social-psychological research regarding end-of-life treatment protocols and provided policy recommendations to the Canadian government.

In 2007 he joined the Animal Welfare Program at UBC to undertake a study of Canadian opinions regarding farm animal welfare. Over the course of three years he conducted extensive interviews with more than 100 producers and non-producers to identify overlapping values capable of advancing meaningful dialogue.

In addition to conducting research, Jeff works directly with Canadian stakeholders actively pursuing the amalgamation of diverse views associated with the care and handling of food animals.

David Trus, Animal Registration Officer, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

David became involved in the animal welfare file with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) in 1998 and has coordinated AAFC’s approach to animal welfare since 2002. He sits as an ex officio member of the NFACC Board and Executive, representing the federal Agriculture and Agri-Food portfolio (AAFC/CFIA). In addition, David has administered the Animal Pedigree Act since 1996 and he advises on animal biotechnology issues for AAFC and interdepartmentally. Prior to the privatization of genetic improvement and evaluation programs, David served as the Swine Improvement Standards Officer with Agriculture Canada from 1991 to 1995.

David was born and raised in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Canada. He attended the University of Guelph where he received his B.Sc. (Agr) (Animal Science) in 1983 and M.Sc. (Animal Breeding) in 1986.

Prior to his career with AAFC David was a researcher at the University of Guelph Department of Animal and Poultry Science and he worked in Rome from 1989 to 1990 for the Associacione Italiana Allevatore (Italian Breeders Association).

Geoff Urton, BC SPCA's Manager of Stakeholder Relations

Geoff is the BC SPCA's Manager of Stakeholder Relations and represents the Canadian Federation of Humane Societies on the National Farm Animal Care Council and its Executive. Geoff’s background in Animal Welfare Science (UBC) and recent credentials in Dialogue and Negotiation (SFU) have helped him make informed contributions to NFACC’s work, including participation on the Beef and Dairy Code Development Committees and the Animal Care Assessment Model Steering Committee.

Dan Weary, Professor and NSERC Industrial Research Chair, Animal Welfare Program, Faculty of Land and Food Systems, University of British Columbia

Dan is a Professor and NSERC Industrial Research Chair at The University of British Columbia. In 1997 Dan co-founded UBC’s Animal Welfare Program and co-directs this active research group. Dan's research focuses on developing behavioral measures for the objective assessment of animal welfare and developing practical methods of improving the welfare of farm animals, lab animals and wildlife.

He has published hundreds of articles and a frequent and enthusiastic speaker on animal welfare to audiences around the world.

Jackie Wepruk, NFACC General Manager

Jackie Wepruk has been the General Manager of the National Farm Animal Care Council (NFACC) since its inception in 2005. Prior to this, she did project-based farm animal welfare related work with the Alberta Farm Animal Care (AFAC) Association and other provincial industry groups.

Jackie facilitates a partnership on NFACC between governments, farmed animal industries, the veterinary community, the humane movement and other allied groups. She works with NFACC’s partners to achieve practical solutions to farm animal welfare concerns that address the interests of farmers, domestic and export markets, governments and the Canadian public.

In 1985 Jackie obtained her Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of Winnipeg, and in 1999, a Master of Environmental Design from the University of Calgary.

Jackie and her husband Rick have a kennel of 22 purebred Siberian Huskies. Winters are busy training and competing in races across BC, Alberta and Saskatchewan.

Tina Widowski, Professor of Applied Animal Behaviour and Welfare in the Department of Animal and Poultry Science and Director of the Campbell Centre for the Study of Animal Welfare at the University of Guelph

Tina was appointed Egg Farmers of Canada Research Chair in Poultry Welfare in 2011. Widowski served on the Scientists Committees for the Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Pigs, the Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Chickens, Turkeys and Breeders, and she currently Chairs the Scientists Committees for Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Laying Hens. Tina also serves on the Steering Committee of NFACC’s animal care assessment model.