Atlantic journalist wins international bursary

A past-president of the CFWF will represent Canadian farm writers at the 2009 International Federation of Agriculture Journalists congress in Texas this summer. Self-employed communications consultant and writer Allison Finnamore is the winner of the CFWF International Bursary. The bursary, sponsored by Monsanto, reimburses up to $2,500 of the winner’s costs to attend the congress.

A graduate of New Brunswick Community College, Finnamore began her career as a reporter in Grand Falls. That was followed by reporting for The New Brunswick Telegraph-Journal and The Fredericton Daily Gleaner.

Her freelance career has seen her work appear in many agriculture and specialty publications across Canada including: Farm Focus of Atlantic Canada, Country Guide, Nova Scotia Business Journal, Top Crop Manager, The Milk Producer, Canadian Poultry Magazine, Fruit and Vegetable Magazine, Country Life in BC, Farmers’ Independent Weekly, Manitoba Co-Operative, Canadian Cattlemen, Canola Guide, Farming A Journal of Northeast Agriculture, Atlantic Construction Journal and The Carleton Victoria Advertiser.

Today, she is the Editor of the weekly Farm Credit Canada AgriSuccess Express and Associate Editor of the bi-monthly AgriSuccess Journal. She also does contract communications work with business and government.

In addition, she has been a tireless contributor to the CFWF in leadership and volunteer positions. She spent five years as a board member representing the Eastern Canadian Farm Writers’ Association (ECFWA) and a year as CFWF President in 2004-05. She’s worked to organize national CFWF conferences, find judges for annual award competitions, and sponsors for events. She says she’s committed to welcoming international visitors to Canada when the Congress is held in Guelph in 2011.

“My volunteer work with CFWF and my freelance business offer me a broad understanding of agriculture throughout the country. The conference being held in the United States, a country with which Canadian agriculture has experienced many challenges and shares many commonalities (BSE, COOL, trade, farm labour, organics), heightens my interest. I relish the chance to be in the heart of American agriculture writers, editors and farmers. I am excited about the trip and look forward to sharing the Canadian experience with fellow conference attendees. I fully expect to stir interest and enthusiasm for attending IFAJ in Canada in 2011,” says Finnamore.

Finnamore says she’ll share her learnings with all who are interested through her already established blog and social networks like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

“I believe there are many more potential CFWF members in Atlantic Canada who may be drawn into the organization when they hear about my experience.”

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