Maryanne McDougall was born a dairy farmer, married a dairy farmer and owned and operated a dairy farm. One may believe that that was all Maryanne was, a dairy farmer but her accomplishments and passions went beyond the dairy farm.
Maryanne was born and raised in Stouffville which is located in York County. She graduated from the University of Guelph with Distinction in 1981 with a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture. She established a career in Consumer Marketing working first at the Credit Union Central in Toronto and later at Alymer Del Monte in Hamilton. She met Paul in 1978 when he was working for OMAF in York County. In 1983 they were married and Maryanne moved home to Fulton with Paul to the dairy farm. In 1987, Laura was born making their family complete. Like other young farm mothers Maryanne did the job with baby in tow whether in the barn or in the field. As Laura grew, Maryanne was involved in many aspects of her life, and in these last years at Guelph, Maryanne couldn’t wait until Laura came home on weekends to tell her about her escapades and share in her adventures. Last year Maryanne and Paul celebrated their 25th anniversary.
Paul and Maryanne are 4th generation dairy farmers on Dougal Lea farms. Dougal Lea Farms has been awarded two Master Breeder’s Shields by the Holstein Association of Canada. They built a herd that was very well respected in the industry resulting in numerous nominations for all Canadian and All American females. They have a long list of excellent and very good cows. In fact, last August Maryanne was able to attend the North Niagara Holstein Show to see Dougal Lea Toby Dana, Laura’s nominated All Canadian 4-H calf, be awarded Grand Champion Cow for North Niagara. While building their herd Paul and Maryanne were also expanding their farm including an expansion on their dairy barn, an implement shed and a cover all building for storage.
When Maryanne was not in the barn she enjoyed spending time with her family and friends. She would often go home to Stouffville to visit her mother and brother on the dairy farm.
Maryanne also was dedicated to volunteering for local community and agriculture organizations. This list included being a director of the Niagara North Federation of Agriculture, director and chair of the Niagara Dairy Producers Milk Committee, a township appointed director of the Peninsula West Utilities Hydro Commission, representing the agriculture industry, and long time secretary of Fulton Stone United Church.
Maryanne grew up as a 4-H member in Stouffville and continued to support 4-H in Niagara as a dedicated director, secretary and treasurer. In 2001, she took it upon herself to apply for a Trillium Foundation grant and received $9200 which was presented at the Lincoln County Fair by Tim Hudak.
Maryanne worked hard over the years promoting and protecting the agriculture industry and it is an honour to present the 2009 Niagara Agriculture Lifetime Achievement award on Maryanne’s behalf to her husband Paul and her daughter Laura.
“We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give”
– Winston Churchill