The purpose of the Ontario Hazelnut Association is to:
Linda Grimo, Chair of the Board of Directors
Linda Grimo was born and raised in the Niagara region. She went to Graceland University, in southern Iowa, and received her BA in Education. She moved to Arizona to teach and while there she earned her MA in Education. She quit teaching shortly thereafter to return to Niagara with her family to work alongside her father, Ernie Grimo, at Grimo Nut Nursery. She helps to manage the farm from the business side and in the fields as well. They dig and ship trees in the spring, and harvest the nuts from their test orchards in the fall selling the surplus crops to local residents. Linda has a passion for farming and for encouraging people to eat local. Along with the guidance of a project coordinator she and a small group of farmers created the Niagara Local Food Coop, an online farmer's market.
Martin Hodgson, Vice Chair of the Board of Directors
Martin graduated from the University of Guelph in 1974 with an Honours Bachelor of Science degree, specializing in Earth Science.
Through the plethora of work experience Martin had, he traveled across Canada, The North Magnetic Pole, South America and Pakistan where he gained a wealth of experience that helped build the foundation for future endevours. Currently, Martin is the Exec. VP Anchoring for Williams Form hardware and Rockbolts (Canada) Ltd. of London Ont., where for the past 23 years he has been involved in the marketing and sales of anchoring products for rock, soil and concrete for heavy construction projects across Canada.
Martin has lived with his wife Pat on a 100 acre farm, in Southern Ontario, just north of Lake Erie for the past 23 years. In that time, through many interesting agricultural endeavours, Martin can fully attest to the old saying that “a farm is a hole in the ground that you pour money into.” But it really is a life style that him and his family would not trade to live in any city for.
Scott Deslippe, Treasurer, is the National Sales Manager and Owner of EBI Canada Inc. based out of Amherstburg, Ontario in Essex County. He was also President of the Amherstburg Chamber of Commerce from 2009 to 2014 and Vice President of the Windsor ATSSA (Automotive Transportation Services Superintendents Association.
Les High, Secretary of the Board of Directors Les High and his wife Pat are using 8 acres of their agricultural land base to grow Hazelnuts. Originally a hobby crop on their parents' farmsteads, they feel that Hazelnuts can add value in multiple ways as a commercial tree crop in Ontario. Les graduated from the Agricultural College at Guelph in 1974. His wife Pat was employed at Agriculture Canada. Later they formed Highview Orchards. Tender Fruit crops was grown for several decades. Their three children were involved into their young adult years. Les is again a start-up farmer finding new intrigue with Hazelnuts. Les believes Hazelnuts will add horticultural diversity within the Tree Crop Industry for Ontario with economics from use in processing and fresh markets. Environmental benefits also exist. It is a crop low in cultural management cost and good research has occurred rapidly in the last 5 to 10 years. The opportunity exists for early adopters.
Gordon Chinnick, Director
Dave Ferguson, Director
Nathan Crocker, Director
John Kelly, Director
Dr. John Kelly is the Chief Executive Officer of KeliRo Company Inc., an organization focused on the commercialization of innovation in the agriculture and life sciences. Previous Executive Vice President of the Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association, he is also formerly Vice-President of the Erie Innovation and Commercialization with the Ontario Fruit & Vegetable Growers' Association. The mandate of this initiative is to diversify agriculture and food opportunities for the sand plains area of the South Central Ontario Region (SCOR). He has a wealth of experience in the private and public sector and has held various executive positions with start-ups and multinational companies, including MaRS Landing, Land O’ Lakes, Ralston Purina, Rhone-Poulenc Canada Inc. and Aventis CropSciences Inc., as well as the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. Throughout his career, he has been focused on innovation development and implementation, actively advancing products and technologies in agriculture, food, biotechnology, pharma and the bioeconomy sectors. John holds a B.Sc. (Agr). and Ph.D. from the University of Guelph and a Master of Science from the University of Alberta.
Adam Koziol, Director has a Bachelor of Commerce Degree from Concordia University. Adam has extensive experience in the Advertising and paper industry. Co-founder of the Adlin Group Inc, a successful advertising agency. Adam has been involved in several Real Estate holdings and owned additional small companies. Adam established Earthgen International over 12 years ago. Earthgen has the exclusive EMIPP technology (Early Maturity Inducement Plant Process). Adam is on the Board of Directors of the Canadian Chestnut Council, Niagara Woodlot Association and Ontario Hazelnut Association
Dr. Toktam Taghavi, Director is a research associate with the Department of Plant Agriculture at the University of Guelph Simcoe Research Station. Her research interests include the development of new cultivars of hazelnuts for the Ontario hazelnut industry. In 2013, she was named adjunct professor at the University of Guelph. She has previous professional experience as an assistant professor at the University of Tehran in Iran as well as a Post-Doctoral Research Associate at the University of Florida. She has experience in transferring research knowledge from the lab to growers, including multiple horticultural crops, fertilizers and crop protection, and post-harvest technologies. She has a Ph.D. from the University of Tehran.
Ivan Tamminga, Director
Randy Wilson, Director
Andrew Nixon was named Project Coordinator of the Ontario Hazelnut Asscociation in September, 2015. Andrew is a graduate of the University of Guelph and is responsible for the continuing activities of the Ontario Hazelnut Association, including coordinating activities of the various partners and projects that the OHA is involved with.
Elliott Currie was named Primary Investigator for various projects being conducted by the Ontario Hazelnut Asscociation in May, 2014. He has been at the University of Guelph since 1998 teaching in the various areas and levels of accounting and financial management. Currently Elliott is also involved in teaching business policy at the undergraduate and MBA levels as well as organizational behaviour and operations. The primary focus of Elliott’s endeavours is in the areas of small business management and interdisciplinary product development, especially in the agri-food chain. Elliott has experience in numerous industries including; banking, aviation, construction, oil and gas, insurance, corrections and primary metals. His roles extended from sales, experiential education instructor and piloting to controllership and financial and marketing analysis.
Elliott is a Chartered Professional Accountant, a Certified Management Accoutant and has an MBA and B.A. from McMaster University.
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