Alberta Goat Association
Board of Directors
Lives in Fourth Creek, AB. Her agricultural background is extensive as she grew up working on a mixed farm . She is familiar with the requirements of seeding, pest management, harvest, working with cattle, running a variety of equipment and being a part of the combine crew.
Currently her husband Shaun, sons Kaz, Zak, and her, have a kiko cross heard. She has been raising goats since 2015. She also grain farms with her parents and younger brother.
After completing her bachelor's in animal science at the Nova Scotia Agricultural College, Melissa pursued her DVM at the Atlantic Veterinary College. Upon completing her DVM, she went to Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine to complete a rotating food animal internship. In 2013, Melissa returned to Canada to pursue her Master's degree at the University of Calgary. Melissa now consults for many organizations and had the opportunity to be a part of the update the Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Goats. Although Melissa does not currently have goats, she hopes to raise meat goats in the future. A solid retirement plan!
My name is Melodi MacKinnon, and my brother and I own and operate Rafter LC Goats in Thorhild County, north of Edmonton. As well as farming, I am an RN. I plan to retire from nursing in 2024, and then I will have more time to support Alberta’s goat industry. We started raising meat goats in January, 2011 and joined the Alberta Goat Association within two years. I have had the honour to serve on the board in various capacities since 2014. In 2020 I served as President, and have been Vice President since that time. I am also currently Treasurer and have Chaired the Promotions and Special Events Committee for several years.
I have attended several agricultural events in Alberta to promote the goat industry and network with other agricultural stakeholders, and look forward to resuming these events when Covid is no longer preventing this. At every event, there is great interest in the goat industry and a growing knowledge that goats do not compete with other sectors, but rather compliment them.
The goat industry is an exciting and growing sector of agriculture in Alberta, and I am excited to support all producers to succeed in, and even exceed, their goals.
Merna has been raising purebred Boer goats for over 20 years now near Innisfail. She became a director with the AGA over 15 years ago and was president during the transition to the new office manager. Currently she is Chair of the Convention of the AGA Annual Convention and Production Sale where together with Office GM Diana O'Hara she organizes speakers and facilities. Additionally she assists with "GoatKeeper' and 'Goat Droppings' content development, maintains the AGA Facebook page and has organized the AGA participation at 'Innovations in Agriculture' at Edmonton Farmfair for the past two years. She has been a longtime chair of the Red Deer Westerner Goat Classic with the Commercial and Junior shows and has also led the Innisfail and Area Junior Goat Club for several years. Education and promotion of the Alberta goat industry are a driving goal for her involvement, she is pleased to see how the association has progressed and looks forward to further developments.
Stacy and her husband Neil have raised goats since 2004. They have a small farm near Busby, AB where they raise a herd of 90 head of Boer and Boer mix does. Stacy has been a registered animal health technologist for over 20 years and currently works in a small animal veterinary clinic. Because of this, she has a strong interest in goat herd health and helping to educate new producers about the ins and outs of raising goats and how to troubleshoot when there are problems in the herd. She has been co-chair of the sale committee of the Annual Convention and Production Sale every year of the sale which she has enjoyed. As a director Stacy has become more in tune with developments in Alberta and Canada in the goat industry and she continues to educated in government and animal health issues.
John and his wife Laura Lee live near Spruce View where for over 25 years John has raised top producing purebred Angora and La Manchas. A strong advocate for all areas of the goat industry John has been an AGA director for over 20 years as well as a director and guiding force behind The Alberta Mohair Producers Association and a long time representative to the Canadian National Goat Federation. He has been heavily involved in showing and promoting both Angora and commercial animals throughout Alberta and his animals are prized as awarding winning for both fibre quality and breed character. Along with John being a long time volunteer to the Red Deer Westerner Goat show, Laura Lee has been a long time volunteer of Olds Fibre week as well. John is a strong force of the industry and a excellent mentor for new producers.
Maureen and her husband have raised Purebred and Percentage Boer goats for Breeding Stock and meat, just south of Three Hills, for the past 17 years. While she is new to the Board for 2018, she has previously worked as a Board Member over the past 16 years. In 2017 she volunteered to work on memberships, and spoke to many at the Convention in Edmonton. Going forward she pledges to all our Members, to listen, respond, advise, and act.
Michelle along with her husband Scott & 2 daughters, Briar and Olivia, dove into goats in 2016. Currently running a small registered herd of boers outside of Valleyview with hopes of expanding. Michelle has been a Registered Animal Health Technologist for 11yrs, working most of those years in her home town at a mixed animal practice. She loves hunting, fishing, and camping with her family. She has connected with lots of wonderful people through goats and can’t wait to maybe one day connect with you!
Tamara Taylor has been passionately involved in the goat industry for the past 30 years in various capacities. She completed her BSA degree in Animal Science from the U of S in 2004. Tamara and family then operated a pasture to plate butcher shop and cafe in central Alberta while raising Savanna meat goats and serving on the previous AGBA board.
At this time Tamara and her family live on a large diverse ranch named "Ravenwood" near Caroline, AB raising beef cattle, warmblood horses, heritage poultry and waterfowl, rabbits as well as Nubian and Nigerian Dwarf dairy goats. Tamara is passionate about continuing education and has completed Langston University Dairy Goat Producer and Meat Goat Producer certifications. She is currently serving as a board member on Alberta Farm Animal Care as well as director of Canadian Nigerian Dwarf Association. Tamara looks forward to promoting and growing the goat industry in Alberta and is very happy to be back on the board after taking a break to raise 4 busy boys.
A little about myself. Myself and my wife Doris are new to the goat world. We have a small acerage just outside Thorsby.
We have only been into boer goats for a little over 4 years.
We have a small herd of 27 boer goats mostly registered stock.
In this time I have acquired my Certification of Quality meat goat producer from Langston University. I am constantly reading anything I can find on goats.
I have met some very knowledgeable people in our field and have asked many a question taking from their experiences.
What I hope to contribute is the new goat owners perspective and what information we would like to see and what our problems are we are facing and try to address those issues.
A great start was The Famacha workshop recently held by the AGA.
In what little spare time we have we love to show our DALMATIANS in the conformation ring.
To advance the growth of the goat industry to benefit Alberta goat producers.
AGA Mission Statement
To provide leadership in all aspects of information, education, promotion, lobbying and representation, of the goat industry, striving for a profitable and stable future.
AGA Goat & Objectives
The AGA board established the following goals for our organization for the immediate future:
1. Membership - increase contributing member names and provide value to members through new educational opportunities and industry events that promote the vibrancy of the Goat industry in Alberta.
2. Funding - develop mechanism to provide stable funding from a membership base that will allow the AGA to access funding programs and provide value for our members, while expanding the role the AGA provides in the development of the Goat Industry in Alberta.
3. Industry Profile - work towards elevating the profile of the AGA within our own industry, to develop producer pride and feeling of ownership in their industry organization. As well to develop the profile of the Alberta Goat industry and its products with the general public, consumers and government. With the aim of taking our rightful place alongside other mainstream industries in the larger Agriculture industry.
The board works with the Alberta Government and the federal government to protect and further the interests of Alberta goat breeders, along with planning and organizing events such as our convention and other workshops. The AGA board also works developing educational materials, dealing with issues pertaining to biosecurity, traceability, disaster preparedness, livestock transportation standards, and a host of other topics. A board volunteer also built and maintains our website, another maintains our Facebook page. The board also works closely with our office and staff to see to the day to day operations of AGA.