The Kemptville College Alumni was part of the group that nominated John Curtis to the Agricultural Hall Of Fame. Mr. Curtis was a former Principal at Kemptville College. His wife Nancy is in the video, speaking about John’s achievements and her acceptance speech.
A high-resolution video copy of the video can be viewed here
Charles MacDonald ’67 grad wanted a place to relax in his five-acre sugar bush. He has many trails in the bush but the original building was gone.
He called a fellow classmate Mackie Robertson and shortly a 12 x 16 building with a 4-foot verandah was completed. The exterior is pine board and batten, and it is insulated for year-round use. The pandemic has certainly made grads want to enjoy the beautiful nature we have all around us.
Michele graduated from Kemptville in 1990 and then ventured to Toronto to attend Ryerson University where she obtained a degree in Nutrition, Food Science and Home Economics and her Professional Home Economics designation (P.H.Ec). Michele has a strong passion for all things involved with food and after University, Michele was very fortunate to join Kraft Canada where she worked in the Kraft Kitchens for a total of 21 years. During her time in the Kraft Kitchens Michele held many roles within the various Kraft brand teams from product and recipe developer, consumer response, What’s Cooking magazine, TV personality and spokesperson and lead of the North American e-mail, website and social media platforms. Michele has consumed many boxes of KD!
In 2016, Michele joined Canada Beef, the non-profit organization responsible for marketing and promoting Canadian beef in domestic and international markets. Coming from a rural and ag background Michele was really excited to join this team to lead Canada Beef’s digital marketing programs. Michele loves the creativity of writing and creating social posts, educational ag content and culinary instructional beef articles for Canadabeef.ca website and social platforms.
Michele is dedicated to connecting consumers with agriculture and building trust, understanding and appreciation for the hard work and dedication of Canadian beef farmers and ranchers. There is an ever-growing widening gap between the urban and rural worlds and she recognizes the importance of telling the Canadian perspective of how food is grown and raised in Canada. Since graduation, Michele has been an active member of the Ontario Home Economics Association holding several board member positions. Michele spends as much time as she can on her family farm near McDonalds Corners, ON and on the Mississippi River. Michele is an avid traveler exploring and eating food from every city that she visits.
Joe and Joy are both year ‘80 grads. Joe was raised on a dairy farm near Williamstown and graduated from the Agricultural program at KCAT. After graduation he worked on his parents’ farm until purchasing his current farm in Berwick in May 1984. Joy was raised on a dairy farm near Maxville and graduated
from the Food and Fashion program at KCAT. After graduation she worked at Riopelle Fabrics in Ottawa until she married Joe and began farming with him in September,1984. Joy also continues to enjoy her other career as a seamstress.
Although they had met at college, it was a chance encounter at the Glengarry Highland Games in 1983, that really brought them together.
They are the proud parents of two daughters, Natalie and Lauren, and two sons, Andrew and Thomas. As you can see from the family picture, Joe and Joy are proud of their children’s partners and, of course, their beautiful grandchildren.
Krolane is a dairy farm with purebred Holsteins. When their children were younger they participated in4-H and cattle shows. Now as empty nesters Joe and Joy are busy with the cattle and crops of hay, corn and soybeans. They use conservation tillage and no-till and have received the Soil Conservation Award from the Stormont Soil and Crop Improvement Association.
Both Joe and Joy have and continue to be involved in their community. Joe has been a 4-H leader and a past president of both the Stormont 4-H Association and the Stormont Holstein Club. He is actively involved with the Stormont Federation of Agriculture and the Knights of Columbus. When Joe was a director of EBI/EastGen, he presented our Historical Building plans to them and we thank him for doing this and EBI/EastGen for their generous donation.
Joy has been involved in 4-H, North Stormont Silver Blades Skating Club, local Catholic Women’s League and was a very active school volunteer when their children were younger. The Seaway Valley Theatre Company has benefitted from her fashion skills. As a member of the Sisters for Life group, which organises local fundraising activities for various cancer initiatives, she has helped raise over $160,000 over the past eight years.
Every community would love to have Kemptville grads like Joe and Joy in their community. Thank you both for all you are doing and have accomplished.
In 2008 Kevin Elshof graduated from Kemptville College. After graduation he worked and travelled in New Zealand and Australia with two schoolmates. In 2010 Kevin returned home full time to Therihof Jerseys. At this time, working with his parents Ria and Theo, they moved their purebred Jersey herd from a tie stall to a free stall. The new free stall accommodates 120 animals. Moving to the free stall meant they were able to double their quota holdings.
In 2016 they built an addition on the free stall to house heifers and dry cows. 2016 also brought wedding bells when Kevin married Marleen from Grand Valley. She moved here with her family from Holland in 2002. When Marleen married Kevin , she brought her flock of Rideau Arcott sheep with her and they are housed in the old barn along with the chickens that 3 year old Stanley and 1 1/2 year old Lydia help look after. For a wedding gift they received a day old Holstein calf as a gift and now they have 10% Holsteins with their Jersey herd.
Kevin and Marleen work full time on the farm and Ria and Theo are still involved in the day to day work as well. Therihof Jerseys became incorporated in 2019 to include Kevin and Marleen so they could have more input in the future of the farm for themselves and the next generation.
Kevin is the class rep for year 2008 and is active in the St. Lawrence Valley Jersey Club and is on the Jersey Canada Youth Board. Dairy farming (and sheep farming) will remain progressive with an ambitious Kemptville grad.
After graduation in 1967, John Downey returned to the family farm in Caledon ON. In 1971 he married Ruth and they took over the family farm. In 1992 they sold their dairy herd and moved into the agri tourism business with strawberries, raspberries, sweet corn, pumpkins and a playground. As time passed they started doing school tours, birthday parties and corporate events at the farm. They then added an Easter egg hunt for children, a Canada Day Celebration and then a Pumpkin Festival. In 1999, their oldest son took over the crops and started his own business across the road , including an apple orchard.
In 2020 their youngest daughter and her husband bought the argi tourism business and now John helps when needed and gives his opinion whether it is wanted or not. Now Ruth and John have more time to spend with their five children and 15 grandchildren.
If you are visiting Downey Farms this July, wish John and Ruth a Happy 50th Wedding Anniversary. Check out their web at www.downeysfarm.com