Volunteer Profile — Janette McDonald: Board member offers lifetime of experience communicating with farmers

Farm Radio International benefits from the dedication of Board members who bring expertise in management, agriculture, radio broadcasting, development communications, finance, legal counsel, and fundraising. This fall, some of our Board members will step down, making room for new faces and points of view.

Janette McDonald of Alberta offers a wealth of experience communicating with farmers, demonstrating a commitment to sustainable agriculture and appropriate technology. She works with soil conservation groups in Alberta, has served as Executive Director of Alberta Pulse Growers, and has worked as a District Agriculturalist with the Alberta Department of Agriculture. With Farm Radio International, she served on the Board for nine years, with terms as Vice-President of the Board and as Chair of the Nominations Committee.

Please describe your most rewarding experience as a Board member of Farm Radio International.

Most rewarding: being part of an organization that chose to collaborate with another NGO (World University Service of Canada) to the benefit of both organizations and their global partners. Second most rewarding: being part of an organization that chose to strengthen its Board of Directors by bringing a resident of Africa onto the Board in 2012.

Based on your experience as a board member, how would you describe Farm Radio International’s work and potential to affect long-term food security in Africa?

In my experience, Canadian farm families have seen their autonomy slip away over the last two decades. Canadian farmers are producing huge volumes of material, but at a serious cost to our communities and local economies. Canadian agriculture started out “feeding the world” but increasingly we are serving the “well-fed.” Farm Radio International’s commitment to small-holder, independent farmers gives me confidence that African farmers will have the information they need to feed their world and their communities in the future.

The staff and fellow Board members of Farm Radio International wish to thank Janette for many dedicated years of service.

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