Four Alumni Named as 2022 Ontario Agricultural Hall of Fame Inductees

Posted on Monday, February 14th, 2022

Four OAC alumni will be inducted into the Ontario Agricultural Hall of Fame: Paul Kelly, Patrick Lynch, Patricia L. Mighton and James G. Rickard.

The induction will take place on June 22 at the GrandWay Events Centre, Grand River Raceway, Elora.

Paul Kelly, B.Sc. (Agr.)’83, is an outstanding contributor to the Ontario bee industry and consequently to Ontario agriculture. He has managed the Honey Bee Research Centre (HBRC) at the University of Guelph since 1987. Paul has developed methods and innovations to counteract some complex stresses, diseases and pests, and is an internationally acclaimed bee expert known for his abilities as a gifted speaker, teacher and extensionist. Paul is effectively educating the world as a global thought leader in pollinator education and research. Paul currently serves on the Pollination and Apiculture Advisory Committee of Ontario and on the Ontario Animal Health Network Apiculture Committee along with involvement and membership in several additional bee and honey related organizations. Paul was nominated by the Ontario Agricultural College, University of Guelph.

Patrick Lynch, B.Sc. (Agr.) ’70, M.Sc. ’73, began his career with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food, as a soils and crops specialist. There he created new crop production techniques, initiated soybean production in new regions, promoted direct cut solid seeded white beans, co-launched a pesticide course (the current Grower Pesticide Safety Course), and started county newsletters. In 2008, he became an independent consultant directly consulting with growers. Pat helped to introduce the Certified Crop Advisor Program to Ontario through development of performance objectives and the CCA examination. This certification program now includes over 650 professional crop advisors. Patrick Lynch was nominated by Ontario Certified Crop Advisor Association. 

Patricia L. Mighton, B.Sc. (Agr.) ‘64, M.Sc. ’93, has been a dynamic force in Ontario agriculture through her advocacy, leadership in agricultural education, and fundraising work. Her leadership role began as class secretary for OAC ‘64, a role she has maintained for nearly six decades. Pat was the University of Guelph’s first female president of the OAC Alumni Association, chair of the OAC Alumni Foundation (OACAF), served on the U of G Senate, and a member of the International and Awards Committees. In 1984, Pat joined the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture as education specialist. Her efforts were invaluable in creating what is now known as AgScape Ontario. Pat was the executive director of the Advanced Agricultural Leadership Program (1987-97) where she led this unique, disciplined, leadership opportunity for people working in agriculture and rural Ontario. AALP is now in its 36th year with 480 alumni in many positions of leadership in the agriculture, food, and rural sectors. Patricia Mighton was nominated by Rural Ontario Institute. 

James G. Rickard’s, B.Sc. (Agr.) ’66, impressive background of business and professional accomplishments have well served many agricultural organizations around Ontario over the past four decades. He is a successful businessman, operating a 1300-acre diversified farm operation in Bowmanville, with his brother. Jim is also a trained facilitator and arbitrator, providing professional consultation for dispute resolution for individuals and grower associations. He is known for his integrity and fairness and his ability to foster unity among diverse interests. With his efforts, Ontario has set the standard of service of adjudication, ensuring that Ontario agriculture operates on principles of justice and fairness. He helped to resolve many conflicting points of view to enable the agricultural industry in Ontario move forward efficiently and profitably. James Rickard was nominated by Ontario Broiler Hatching Egg and Chick Commission (OBHECC).

Full details are posted on the Ontario Agricultural Hall of Fame website

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