© Mike Carson/Journal Pioneer
John J. MacDonald
ST. NICHOLAS – St. Nicholas beef producer John J. MacDonald will be inducted into the Atlantic Agricultural Hall of Fame later this month in recognition of his contributions to the agricultural industry.
MacDonald will be inducted Oct. 17 in a ceremony at Cumming Hall on the campus of Dalhousie University Faculty of Agriculture.
“I was certainly shocked when I got the call from the agricultural minister to tell me I was chosen and would I accept,” MacDonald said. “It’s a pretty humbling experience to be inducted into the Atlantic Agricultural Hall of Fame, knowing all of the people who have been inducted before me from Prince Edward Island. In the last number of years I’ve had the pleasure of working with most of them.”
MacDonald said although the award is being presented to him, he credits his family for giving him the time away from the farming operation to pursue other areas of the industry and the community.
“I’m receiving this honour but my whole family has played a major role in allowing me to have that opportunity to be involved,” he said. “I always say I’ve definitely received a lot more from my involvement than I could ever give. I was away a lot of times and somebody is at home. There’s major support there from all members of the family.”
MacDonald will join fellow inductees Gordon Hunter from New Brunswick, Ralph Morehouse of Nova Scotia and Leonard Ruby from Newfoundland and Labrador. The ceremony begins at 1 p.m.
MacDonald has a long record of service, to both the agricultural community and the province in general.
He has been involved with the 4-H movement at the local, provincial and national level for over 50 years. He was named a honourary member of the Canadian 4-H Council for his long service in 2009.
A graduate of Athena Regional High School and Nova Scotia Agricultural College, MacDonald worked at Agricultural Employment Services before becoming the general manager of the Greater Summerside Chamber of Commerce in 1996. He retired from that position in 2011
He has served as president of the Summerside District Federation of Agriculture, P.E.I. Federation of Agriculture, Atlantic Farmers Council, Summerside District 4-H Council, P.E.I. 4-H Council, Canadian 4-H Council, P.E.I. Cattlemen's Association and Canadian Young Speakers for Agriculture.
MacDonald has also served as a director of the Summerside Co-op, and executive member of the Canadian Federation of Agriculture, Canadian Cattlemen's Association and the P.E.I. Swine Breeders Association.
He also served on the National Agricultural Environment Committee, a provincial agricultural taskforce committee, reviewing the agricultural program within the Provincial Department of Agriculture, the Feed Freight Assistance Task Force and the Farm Practice Review Board.
MacDonald has a long involvement with the St. Nicholas Community Council, chaired the United Way PEI provincial campaign in 2006, was a director of the Greater Summerside Chamber of Commerce and the Summerside Lobster Carnival, served on a task force reviewing Occupational Health & Safety; and is currently a member of the Environmental Management Committee for the East Prince Waste Management Facility and the Advisory Council for Centre for Life Long Learning at the UPEI School of Business.
His induction into the Hall of Fame is the latest in a long list of awards and citations. He has received the Queen’s Jubilee Medal, the P.E.I. Institute of Agrologists’ Recognition Award, 4-H Honorary Member for P.E.I. in 2003, Chamber Executive of the Year for Canada for 1998 and a Community Service Award in 2005.