Brian Newcombe

Brian Newcombe

Chair

Brian is a partner in Cornwallis Farms Ltd. located in Port Williams, Kings County. He is the ninth generation to farm on the original farmstead which was first settled in 1761.

Cornwallis Farms is a mixed operation consisting of dairy, layers, broiler chickens, and cash crops. He and his wife Edna were named among Canada’s Outstanding Young Farmers in 2003.

He is currently a director of Annapolis Valley Chamber of Commerce, and past President of the Outstanding Young Farmers of Canada. He is also chair of the Annapolis Valley Farms Trust Society and has been involved in Agricultural land policy for many years.

Brian enjoys hockey, golf and camping with his wife Edna and three children Leah, Evan and Ryan.

Charles Keddy

Vice-Chair

Charles grew up in Kings County and graduated from NSAC in 1973. He is a first generation farmer starting in 1977 with a small farm in Grafton, Kings Co.. Charles presently farms in Lakeville, Kings Co. with his wife Doris and son Philip. They operate Charles Keddy Farms Ltd.  and C.O. Keddy Nursery Inc.

He is past President of the Nova Scotia Federation of Agricultural, Horticulture Nova Scotia and North American Strawberry Growers Association. Presently he is chairman of Agri Futures Nova Scotia. He was chosen as an Outstanding Young Farmer of Canada in 1992. He received a U.S. EPA award for work on fumigant reduction in relation to ozone layer protection in 1997 and RBC Innovator of the year award in 2012.

As well as son Philip, Charles and Doris have two daughters Treasure and Amber.

Geoff Muttart

Geoff Muttart

Co-Secretary

Geoff Muttart is the Senior Lawyer with muttarts law firm.  He is a native of Kings County, Nova Scotia, and has practiced law in Kentville since 1995.  In addition to his law degree, he has specialized training in environmental law and related legislation.  Geoff provides legal solutions to Municipal Governments, Farms, Businesses and Individuals. He has a comprehensive practice with extensive experience in Municipal Law, Planning and Zoning Law, Real Estate Law, Agricultural Law, Business Law, Estates and Estate Planning Law.

Geoff is very involved in community affairs. He is currently Secretary of the Annapolis Valley Farmland Trust Society, a Director of the Real Estate Lawyers Association of Nova Scotia, and a member of the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society Real Estate Standards Committee.  He is a Past-Chairperson of the Kings Regional Development Agency, a Past-President of the Kings County Barristers’ Society, and a former Officer of Kentville Development Corporation Limited, the British Automobile Touring Association of Nova Scotia, and Eastern Kings Chamber of Commerce. He belongs to various subsections of the Canadian Bar Association – Nova Scotia Branch.

He lives in Kentville with his wife and children.

Marilyn Cameron

Marilyn Cameron

Co-Secretary

Marilyn has lived in Kings County for over 20 years and currently resides in Grafton, on a 50 acre farm property, with husband, Paul, and daughter, Hannah. Marilyn is a part-time small animal veterinarian who graduated from the Atlantic Veterinary College in 1997 and is employed at Cornwallis Veterinarians Ltd. Marilyn and her husband operate a small, no-spray fruit and vegetable farm and sell their produce at two local farmers’ markets. The farm’s largest crop is organically-grown garlic. Marilyn also owns a small flock of 16 Shetland sheep for wool and 70 or so free range laying hens. The registered family farm now has an easement with the Farmland Trust, of which they are very proud.

Marilyn has been a long time advocate for the protection of farmland and has been a long standing member of NoFarmsNoFood. She actively participates in land use issues at the municipal level as well as at the provincial level ever hoping that policies will be reframed to better preserve and protect our existing and future farm land; to support existing farms so that they can thrive and prosper; and, to help young farmers gain access to affordable farmland through transition programs.

Peter Eisses

Peter Eisses

Peter is a second generation apple farmer from Centreville, Nova Scotia.

His passion for preserving farm land came while working in New England and seeing the peril of farmland vs development firsthand.

Four years ago Peter, along with his family, moved back to Nova Scotia to reconnect with his roots.

Peter lives in Northville with his wife and four children, seeing the third generation take an interest in farming.

Janice Lutz

Janice Lutz

Janice Lutz has worked and lived in the Valley for 30 years.  She graduated from NSAC and has held several positions within the agricultural sector.

She and her husband own an apple and peach farm in Rockland, Kings County.   Their four children are the 5thgeneration on the original farm property.  Janice and Larry continue to expand their tree fruit operation and are pleased that their new grandson lives on a recently acquired expansion (now 6 generations).

Janice has held various volunteer positions over the years and is currently Chairman of the Western Kings Memorial Health Society, a director on the Dalhousie Faculty of Agriculture Alumni Association, and a member of the Women’s Institutes of Nova Scotia.

Off the farm Janice is the Operations Manager of the Bezanson and Chase Cranberry Company and is Secretary of the Nova Scotia Cranberry Growers Association and the Canadian Cranberry Growers’ Coalition. She enjoys travel, the outdoors, being physically active and riding motor bikes with her husband.

Matthew Ross

Matt is a chartered accountant and senior manager with Grant Thornton LLP’s Kentville office.  Born and raised in Wolfville, Matt has recently returned home to the Annapolis Valley after ten years in British Columbia.  Matt specializes in providing tax, estate and succession planning services to a wide range of private businesses, with a focus on those in the agricultural sector.

Matt and his wife reside in Port Williams with their two children.

Susan Meldrum

Susan Meldrum

Susan is the General Manager, and co-owner of the Bessie North House, a 12 seat, farm-to-table restaurant just outside of Canning at the base of the North Mountain in the Annapolis Valley.  

She holds a degree from St. Mary’s University and a Diploma in Wine Business Management from Niagara College. She  managed the retail operations at Avondale Sky Winery for 3 years and has worked from the vineyard to the tasting room.

Food security, knowing where your food comes from, and who grows it, have always been important to Susan. Being part of the Farmland Preservation Trust brings all of these core values together.

Leslie Wade

Leslie Wade

Leslie worked for 16 years in social work. For over ten years she ran a small business and since 1997 has been managing the family farm.

She is concerned about all things environmental including the need for a healthy and sustainable future, hence, her interest in farmland protection.

Andy Parker

Andy Parker

Andy was raised in Grafton, Kings County and attended Dalhousie University where he met his wife Gail.  After graduating with a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering, they moved to Alberta where Andy worked in the oil industry.  In 1982, Andy and Gail, and their children Ian and Janet, returned to Nova Scotia where Andy was the Manager of Petroleum Resources in the Provincial government, and later worked with the Canada Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board, involved in the regulation of offshore petroleum activities.

Andy and his family now operate CAP Farms Inc, an apple farm in Grafton, Nova Scotia. This farm was started by Andy and Gail in the 1980’s, and was managed by Gail until Andy’s retirement in 2007.

Andy is a past president of the Nova Scotia Fruit Growers Association and joined the Board of the Annapolis Valley Farmland Trust in 2017.

Peter Hicklenton

Peter Hicklenton

Peter Hicklenton has been a resident of Grafton, Kings County for the past 32 years. He is a former research scientist and National Science Director with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, based at the Kentville Agricultural Centre (Kentville Research Centre). His research focused on greenhouse crops, and later small fruit production. From 2005 until his retirement in 2012 he directed AAFC’s national effort in sustainable crop production systems, with special responsibility for programs in Winnipeg, Kentville, Charlottetown and St. John’s.

Since retiring from AAFC he has served as advisor and recently as Chair of FarmWorks Investment Cooperative, a Community Economic Development Investment Fund (CEDIF) created in 2011 to promote and provide financial resources to food and agriculture businesses throughout Nova Scotia.

Peter is active in the cooperative movement in the Annapolis Valley having served on the board of Valley Credit Union and chaired VCU’s Audit, and Social and Environmental Responsibility Committees. He also volunteers with several community organizations including Friends of the Kentville Ravine, Black Rock Trails Society and, through 2014, the Out of the Cold Emergency Shelter. Peter is married with one daughter, living and working in Halifax. He enjoys sailing, bicycling and medium-distance running, not necessarily in that order!

Rick O’Regan

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