The Eastern Canada Farm Writers’ Association (ECFWA) serves the common interests of agricultural communicators, including reporters, writers, editors and broadcasters, as well as those in industry, government and academia who are involved in agricultural communications.
The ECFWA represents approximately 140 members in the provinces of Ontario and Quebec.
The ECFWA joins with other regional farm writer organizations in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Atlantic Canada to form the Canadian Farm Writers’ Federation (CFWF).
ECFWA members also belong to the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists (IFAJ).
On June 20, 1955 five well-connected farm writers came together at the Agricultural Institute of Canada annual meeting in Edmonton. Several meetings followed and Tom Leach, of CBC, Dick Beamish of the Western Producer, Jack Cram, Western editor of the Family Herald, Frank Jacobs of Canadian Cattlemen and Don Baron, of Country Guide became the founding fathers of the Canadian Farm Writers' Association.
The organization of regional associations, and a change in name to the Canadian Farm Writers' Federation (CFWF) followed soon after. The original vision of the organization was to have western and eastern associations under the umbrella of the national organization. However, the desire of British Columbia to have its own organization resulted in the four western provinces forming their own regional associations, with eastern Canada maintaining one association, the ECFWA.
In 2010 the ECFWA split into two groups, with Ontario and Quebec maintaining one regional association as the ECFWA and the Atlantic Canada Farm Writers' Association (ACFWA) representing agricultural communicators in New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland.
Working Together For Agriculture.
Our ECFWA Constitution
- LAST REVISED AT APRIL 5, 2012 ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
Name: Eastern Canada Farm Writers’ Association
Definitions: The Association shall mean Eastern Canada Farm Writers’ Association.
Aims and Objectives
- To assist in the improvement and development of Canadian agriculture and to promote better understanding between agriculture and all other groups through broadcast, print and electronic media.
- To encourage improvement in farm writing and communications practices.
- To secure greater co-operation from news sources in providing information and material required by Farm Writers to effectively carry out Objective Number 1.
- To advance the status and welfare of the membership through:
- Encouraging and promoting the exchange of material, which will assist in providing the public with accurate and current agricultural information.
- Encouraging and promoting the exchange of ideas on improved methods of presentation of agricultural information.
- Such other means as are deemed to adhere.
Member: Anyone who is interested in and whose work is related to communicating with the agricultural community through broadcast, print and electronic media shall be eligible for membership, subject to the approval of the Executive of the Association, in the Eastern Canada Farm Writers’ Association.
Honorary Member: The Executive Council may recommend Honorary membership for a period not exceeding one year to be voted on at the Annual Meeting.
Life Members: Those who have made an outstanding contribution to the field of agriculture may be nominated for life membership at the Annual Meeting of the Association and must be elected by a two-thirds majority of those present at the Annual Meeting. Life membership carries with it all the privileges of active membership.
Charter Members: Charter members of the Association shall be those persons present and approving the constitution, at the organizational meeting or prior to March 13, 1956.
Officers and Executive Council
- The governing body of the Association shall be the Executive Council comprised of ten members. This Executive Council shall consist of the five officers of the association and five other members. The council shall be elected in the manner set forth below.
The officers of the Association shall be: President, 1st Vice-President, 2nd Vice President, Secretary-Treasurer and Communications Coordinator.
The officers and members of the Executive Council shall be elected by a majority of voting members at the Annual Meeting of the Association and shall hold office until their successors are elected.
The name of the President shall be recommended to the CFWF as the Eastern representative of the CFWF prior to the election of the incoming CFWF executive.
- A quorum of the Executive Council shall consist of three of its members, one of which must be the President or Vice-President.
Vacancies in offices may be filled temporarily by appointment by the President.
The Council shall be empowered to appoint such committees, as they deem advisable to conduct the affairs of the Association.
There shall be an annual membership fee as designated by the Association, an agreed portion of which shall be forwarded to the Canadian Farm Writers’ Federation. The fees for any one year shall be payable in advance and are due on April 30th of the fiscal year.
Any member who fails to pay dues before July 31st may have his/her name deleted from the list of members.
An Annual Meeting shall be held. Additional meetings may be held when deemed necessary by the Council, or upon the written request of a majority of the members in good standing.
Resolutions and Business
Business and/or resolutions may be transacted by the Association with a majority vote of those eligible voting members present at a duly and properly called meeting. The Association may enact, amend or repeal by-laws under the same conditions.
Such by-laws become effective immediately upon adoption.
The Secretary-Treasurer shall keep a separate record of all by-laws.
The constitution may be amended by the unanimous vote of the members present at any Annual Meeting or by three-fourths vote of the members present at such meeting provided that written notice of the proposed amendment shall have been duly distributed to each member not less than ten days before such meeting.
The fiscal year shall be the same as the Canadian Farm Writers’ Federation.
Two members in good standing with the ECFWA shall be appointed by the members of the Association at the Annual Meeting.
Membership fees will be reviewed each year at the ECFWA Annual Meeting. The portion of this fee to be forwarded to the CFWF shall be the cost of membership in the national federation as determined and duly approved at an annual meeting of the CFWF.
Membership may be terminated by written resignation at any time, or when the behaviour of a member is deemed by the Council as unbecoming to the Association.
Membership shall automatically terminate upon the failure to pay dues by July 31st of fiscal year but may be reinstated upon payment of regular fees.
Quorum – A quorum for an Annual Meeting shall be not less than fifteen paid-up members.
Notification of meeting of the Association shall be made in writing; notices to be distributed to each member at least ten days prior to such meeting.
Duties of the Secretary-Treasurer – The Secretary-Treasurer shall be responsible for recording the proceedings of all meetings of the Association and the Council; notifying members of all meetings and in case of special meetings, the business for which such meeting is called should be stated in the notice. The Secretary-Treasurer shall conduct correspondence relating to the business of the Association and keep an up-to-date list of paid-up members and delinquent members.
The Secretary-Treasurer shall receive and hold the funds belonging to the Association and dispense same as directed by the Association or Council, and shall supply the Executive Council and Membership Committee with an up-to-date list of paid-up members, honorary and life members.
The Secretary-Treasurer shall accept a set of books signed off by the reviewers from the previous Secretary-Treasurer. The Secretary-Treasurer shall receive all monies, duly record same, and issue cheques for all monies, after due authorization by the Council. The signing officers of the Association shall be any two of the President, Vice-Presidents, and Secretary-Treasurer.
The Council shall consider and deal with all applications for membership in the Association and may recommend honorary membership to be voted on at the Annual Meeting.
Application shall be made in writing, with fee accompanying, to the Secretary-Treasurer.
Membership List – An official membership list will be kept by the Secretary-Treasurer, a copy of which will be made available to all paid-up members and to others only when authorized by the Council.
Newsletter – A Newsletter will be regularly prepared and distributed to paid-up members.
Reviewers – It shall be the duty of two members in good-standing with the ECFWA to signoff on the Association’s financial records on an annual basis, indicating the records are an accurate reflection of the association’s business. These appointed reviewers shall have the right of access at all times to the financial records of the Association and shall provide a report to the Annual Meeting of the Association.
It shall be mandatory that the objects of the organizations, as set out in the Constitution, be read at the first Council meeting following the Annual Meeting.
A Nominating Committee shall be appointed by the executive Council not less than one month prior to the annual meeting.
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