WCTA Life Member Awards Presented

12.04.24-WCTAlogo-grassonly.jpgTwo individuals were recognized for their outstanding achievements at this year's conference.  Presented with WCTA Life Member Awards were Jim Ross and Don Biggin.  Congratulations to you both!

16.03.11-life.member.award.rossJim Ross, Prairie Turfgrass Research Centre (retired) - Jay Leach (left) provided a few words and presented Jim with the award

Jim Ross: A Few Career Highlights

  • Being involved in organizing the Alberta Golf Superintendents Association and becoming the first President 1985-87
  • Taking on the position with the Prairie Turfgrass Research Centre and assisting in its development 1991
  • Managed many turfgrass research projects that included winter injury, diseases studies, pathology, weed studies and varietal trials.
  • Networked with the turfgrass industry to develop priorities and raise funds for research.
  • Conducts problem solving consultations with the turfgrass industry throughout Western Canada.
  • Makes regular presentations at conferences and seminars on research findings.
  • Organized, developed curriculum and delivered courses in the Turfgrass Management Certificate program at Olds College
  • Responsible for the business operations of the PTRC.  In 2014, with support from the Canadian Turfgrass Research Foundation, Alberta Turfgrass Research Foundation and the Alberta Golf Superintendents Association was awarded a federal grant for turfgrass research in the amount of $2.3M.

Don Biggin, Pickseed (retired) and 1988 WCTA President - Don was not able to attend but the following was read by President Trevor Smith during the Annual General Meeting:

Don retired in 2015 after an enviable 38 year career in the seed industry, his last post, as Sales and Production Coordinator for Pickseed Canada‚Äôs British Columbia operation.  Don is a graduate of the University of British Columbia with a degree from the Faculty of Agricultural Sciences.  He held membership in the BC Society of Agrologists and was a Director on the BC Forage Council, representing the Canadian Seed Trade Association. He is also a past Director of the Canadian Seed Trade Association, serving as President in 1998/99 and served as the 1988 WCTA President, overseeing the official 25th anniversary conference and trade show held in Victoria.  As per the WCTA Life Member selection criteria, we recognize his tremendous service throughout his career and as WCTA President by awarding him a Life Membership.

I am honoured and very appreciative of being recognized by the current Board of Directors in bestowing upon me, a WCTA Lifetime Membership award.  Unfortunately, it was not possible for me to attend this meeting to receive it in person. 

When I first became a member of WCTA in 1980, the Association had a part-time Executive Director in Dr. Doug Taylor.  In 1986, the part-time Executive Director continued with Ken and Freda Warner.  WCTA continued to grow.  It was during Ken and Freda's tenure that I was on the Board for a number of years and went through the WCTA chair as President.  In 1991 the growth of WCTA was increasing rapidly and was now being very capably managed by a full-time Executive Director, Bob Wick.  In 2009 to present Jerry Rousseau continues the work of the Executive Director in a very professional manner in what is now a very sizable Association. 

I believe WCTA has been so successful, because the past and present Executive Directors and WCTA Boards of Directors have stayed focused on the core values of WCTA - Research - Education - Discussion.  I am pleased to have played a small part in WCTA as a member and now by receiving a Lifetime Membership.  Once again, this award is very much appreciated.