Women in agriculture award winner loves the way of life

Few who have attended a cattle event in the last 30 years wouldn’t have crossed paths with Belinda Wagner.

She has spent her career in agriculture, and last month was honoured for her dedication and commitment.

Canadian Western Agribition and BMO presented its inaugural Celebrating Women in Agriculture Award to the Saskatchewan resident.

Wagner said she was excited and honoured to be recognized for simply doing what she loves.

She has worked for the Saskatchewan Livestock Association, the Saskatchewan Angus Association and its junior association, the Canadian Junior Angus Association and the Canadian Angus Foundation.

At Agribition, she was busy organizing the Angus show, and in the past few years has been involved in the sales.

“I’ve been involved with Agribition since I started working,” she said. “Right from promoting beef by selling beef on a bun way back when to organizing when we had the Beef Information Centre things a number of years ago.”

Wagner said she was pleased to have been nominated by the Easton family from Wawota, Sask., Angus breeders with whom she has worked for years.

She said there are many women who deserve the award.

“Many of us of my age demographic … we didn’t really think about it as being a gender-based thing we were doing,” she said.

“We just did it because we love it, we love the industry, we love working with the people and it’s a way of life for us.”

Wagner was raised on a mixed farm at Earl Grey, Sask., and still goes to help her family with harvest.

She started working in the in-dustry right out of school, which evolved into working on boards and developing youth programs.

“I’m an organizer,” she said.

“There were a lot of people on the administrative side that were women, but not many on boards. We see more these days, which is great. I think we bring a lot to the table.”

She pointed to genomics, research and other improvements as big changes in the industry over the years, and she encouraged young women to become involved.

“If you do get involved you’ll be rewarded,” she said.

“It’s like a family. You become friends, not just colleagues.”

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