Alberta Farm Animal Care Association

2021 Conference Speakers

Click the photo above to visit Dr. Jody’s website

Over the past 15 years, Dr. Jody Carrington has assessed, treated, educated and empowered some of our most vulnerable and precious souls on the planet. She is a child psychologist by trade, but Jody rarely treats kids. The answer lies, she believes, in the people who hold them. Especially when kids have experienced trauma, that’s when they need big people the most. Some of her favourites include educators, parents, first responders, and foster parents. Jody has shifted the way they think and feel about the holy work that they do.

Before Jody started her own practice and speaking across the country, she worked at the Alberta Children’s Hospital on the inpatient and day treatment units where she held families with some of the difficult stories. They taught her the most important lesson: we are wired to do hard things. We can handle those hard things so much easier when we remember this: we are wired for connection.

This all started when Jody received her Bachelor of Arts with Distinction from the University of Alberta. She completed a year-long internship with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police during that time, and worked along side families struggling with chronic illness at the Ronald McDonald House. She received her Master’s degree in Psychology at the University of Regina and completed her PhD there as well, before completing her residency in Nova Scotia.  

Her first book, Kids These Days: A Game Plan for (Re)Connecting with those we Teach, Lead & Love, came out in 2019 and sold 20,000 copies in just three months. It is now on Amazon’s Best Sellers List.

CRSB - Andrea White


CRSB - Shannon Argent


Andrea White is the Community Engagement and Marketing Manager with the Canadian Roundtable for Sustainable Beef (CRSB). She leads the development and implementation of marketing and communications strategies for the CRSB and its Certified Sustainable Beef Framework to align with the CRSB’s mission, vision, principles and mandate. She is a key liaison with the multi-stakeholder membership of the CRSB across the beef value chain and beyond. She serves on the Communications Council of the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef (GRSB), and is a current member of the Communications Committee for the Grains Code of Practice.

Andrea received her Undergraduate (Biochemistry) and Masters (Food Science) Degrees from the University of Manitoba. She has a diverse background with experience in program management, stakeholder engagement, industry communications & marketing, policy development, food processing, research, and product development. Having grown up in Winnipeg, Andrea has recently returned home to Manitoba after 20 years in Alberta and BC.

As the Verified Beef Production Plus Business Manager, Shannon Argent brings an eclectic set of skills to the role. With a diverse background in a range of beef-related career experiences, education, a deep passion for the VBP+ program and a dynamic team, she manages program delivery, industry and stakeholder engagement and committee oversight as well as day to day operations. With her previous experience and her involvement in her family’s ranching operation, she combines boots to the ground experience and strategic program development to ensure the success of the VBP+ program.

Dr. Christian Nawroth

Leibnitz-Insitut für Nutztierbiologie Dummerstorf (FBN)

Foto: Thomas Häntzschel / nordlicht

Hi, my name is Christian Nawroth. My main research interests focus on animal cognition and applied ethology, specifically how farm animals perceive and understand their physical and social environment.

I am currently a postdoctoral researcher at the Leibniz Institute for Farm Animal Biology (FBN) in Dummerstorf, Germany. After completing my PhD in Halle, Germany, I have been awarded a research fellowship at the Queen Mary University London where I conducted research on goat-human interactions. After the fellowship, I moved to the FBN where I am now involved in a project on the effects of domestication and specific selection objectives on learning and cognition in goats.

I am engaged in activities to increase the transparency of research to our peers and society in general (Open Science). I am also engaged in Science Communication and Outreach activities, by proactively using social media (including Twitter and other platforms, including my own blog) to translate applied ethology research for the public.

Heather Neave


Heather Neave received her Master and PhD degrees from the University of British Columbia in the Animal Welfare Program where she studied the emotional states of dairy calves, and how personality affects how individuals cope with common management stressors in dairy calves and goats. Heather is currently a postdoctoral research fellow with AgResearch in New Zealand, where she works with the dairy industry to measure and improve the welfare of pasture-based dairy cows on commercial farms. 

Jackie Wepruk

Jackie Wepruk has been the General Manager of the National Farm Animal Care Council (NFACC) since its inception in 2005.  In this capacity she facilitates a partnership on NFACC between governments, farmed animal industries, the veterinary community, the humane movement, food companies, and other allied groups. She assists NFACC’s partners in achieving practical solutions to farm animal welfare concerns that address the interests of farmers, domestic and export markets, governments and the Canadian public.


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

Martine Fraser


Hello and let me introduce myself, my name is Martine Fraser and I am a Farmer wellness worker. I am happy to present to you the Quebec organization Au Coeur des Familles Agricoles, our work and our agricultural reality. Hope to see you on March 9.

The mission of the non-profit organization At the heart of farming families – Au cœur des familles agricoles (ACFA) –  is to create a support network within the agricultural community. The organization favors a proactive and participatory intervention approach. This implies the mobilization of all the people revolving around agricultural workers and their families. Training, awareness and community support are the elements that underpin ACFA’s mission.


Producer Panel

Donovan Kitt


The HomesteadFacebookInstagram

Donovan and his family farm in Goodfare Alberta – a small community west of Grande Prairie near the British Columbia border. Certified organic for over 30 years, they produce and direct market 100% grass-fed beef and bison, pastured pork and poultry, free-range eggs, great-tasting vegetables, and nutrient-dense micro-greens. They also dabble in organic honey production and host an occasional farm-to-table dinner. Donovan is passionate about closing the gap between pasture and plate and believes in having an “open-gate” policy where consumers can visit the farm, see how their food is produced, and meet the people who take pride in producing it. He and his family use regenerative farming practices that enhance biodiversity, improve soil health, and restore watersheds to ensure the food produced on their farm is as beneficial for the planet as it is nutritious for their customers.

Heini Hehli


Mosnang Holsteins

Bio to come!

Jasmin Bautz


Country Log Ranch – Youtube

Jasmin Bautz was raised on a diverse family farm in Middle Lake, Saskatchewan. She is a fourth-generation beef, forage, and grain producer and a second-generation goat producer. Her passion for livestock and the goat industry developed in the goat barn as her mother operated Country Log Ranch. Today Jasmin manages Country Log Ranch, raising purebred and commercial Boer goats and commercial sheep. In spring of 2021, she will obtain a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture from the University of Saskatchewan.

Jill Burkhardt


Crooked Lake Farms

Jill Burkhardt, her husband, and three kids are the 5th generation to farm near Gwynne, Alberta. The mixed farm has 150 cows and a small backgrounding feedlot, produces wheat, malt barley, canola and oats.

Jill manages the cow herd from calving, to grazing, and winter feeding.

When she is not with the cows, she homeschools their 3 kids, is a freelance writer, enjoys her small chicken flock, loves the mountains, and tries to find time to read, quilt and write.

Media Panel

Alexis Kienlen


Alexis Kienlen lives in Edmonton and has been a journalist with “Alberta Farmer” newspaper since 2008. In addition to degrees in journalism and international studies, she also holds a certificate in Food Security from Ryerson University. In addition to being a journalist, Alexis is also a freelance writer, the author of two poetry books and a biography. She recently released the novel “Mad Cow”, which tells the story of an Alberta farm family dealing with the BSE crisis.

Barb Duckworth


Barbara Duckworth grew up on a mixed farm in southern Saskatchewan. She graduated from Lethbridge College with a journalism diploma and later earned a BA in communication from the University of Calgary. She has been an agriculture journalist since 1977 working with Canadian breed magazines. She joined the Western Producer in 1988 and retired as the staff livestock reporter in March, 2020. She lives in Calgary with her husband Floyd Thompson where they raised three children and now have two grandchildren. Since retirement she has been studying Roman history and baking bread and bagels.

Lee Hart


Born and raised on an Eastern Ontario dairy farm, Lee Hart, has been a journalist for nearly 50 years. Starting as a writer and editor with daily and weekly newspapers in various parts of Canada, Hart has been a long-time agricultural writer based in Calgary, covering virtually all aspects of the Canadian agriculture industry for more than 35 years. He has been a field editor for Grainews and editor of the magazine’s Cattleman’s Corner section for the past 16 years.



Animal Health Emergency Management workshop

Follow them on Twitter – AHEMproject

Facilitator: Todd Bergen-Henengouwen – AHEM Activity Lead

Todd has been involved with the AHEM project since 2016. His wide range of industry experience has been integral to supporting the collaborative development and presentation of emergency response plans for producers and livestock association across Canada.

Todd grew up on a mixed irrigated crop farm in southern Alberta where he continues to play a significant role in business operations. His farm is situated near several large-scale feedlots so he understands the magnitude an animal disease emergency could have on the local economy and the Canada agriculture sector at-large.

Becky Taylor


Difficult Conversations & Challenging Situations

Facilitators: Becky Taylor and Corp. Lindsey Anderson

Becky Taylor has been dedicated in her career as a Registered Veterinary Technologist for over 25years. In that time, she has worked in mixed animal practice, in education, and currently with a veterinary corporation. She has participated in hundreds of CE opportunities, sat on many national and provincial boards and considers herself a lifelong learner. The pinnacle of this learning was in 2016, when Becky completed a Master of Arts in Professional Communication through Royal Roads University.

Becky currently has 2 professional roles. She is the Director of Communication and Culture with Mosaic Veterinary Partners and the Co-Founder of BS Communication Strategies and most recently a shareholder in Animal Health Link.

BS Communication Strategies provides communication coaching to individuals, companies and teams in a practical, skills- based way.


She has spoken extensively on the topic of communication to various groups in the animal health industry and is well respected for her enthusiasm and knowledge in that area. She is a self proclaimed, Communication Nerd!


Becky shares her life with husband, Colin, and their 2 children, Nick and Maddy as well as many fur friends. Her passion outside of family and work is her horses and she can be found spending lots of her free time developing her skill as a horsewoman.

Corporal Lindsey Anderson

Lindsey has been a member of the RCMP since 2003 and working as a Livestock Investigator in Alberta for the past three years.  Lindsey’s has worked in several areas of law enforcement, including homicide, prostitution, auto theft, crime reduction, and covert operations.  Lindsey grew up in Northern Saskatchewan where she spent several years working on the family farm.  She has a sincere passion for the farming/ranching community and is dedicated in helping her clients through some of the most difficult times.

Lindsey assisted with the Turkey protest 2019 in Fort Macleod among other animal activist protests, and will be sharing information regarding these events along with how to deal with persons involved in such difficult encounters.


Talk, Ask, Listen

Facilitator information coming soon!

Call Alert Line