A former Mossbank resident has been inducted into the Saskatchewan Agriculture Hall of Fame.
Laurie Tollefson, retired director of the Canada-Saskatchewan Irrigation Crop Diversification Centre at Outlook, was one of five inducted in mid-April.
Raised on a third generation farm near Mossbank and graduating from Mossbank schools, Tollefson graduated from the University of Saskatchewan, and was employed at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada until he joined the centre.
His nomination was for leadership in advancing irrigation research and technology and promotion of irrigation locally and internationally.
“As a grandson of original homesteaders, a Saskatchewan farm boy, an ag grad, and a lifelong resident of this province, it truly is an honour of a lifetime to receive this,” he told the induction event.
Tollefson says the dryland where he grew up influenced his interest in irrigation. Irrigation was rather new to Saskatchewan in the 1980's.
“With the lack of rainfall; every year, it was just so darn dry. But studying agriculture at the University of Saskatchewan and working summers with Prof. Les Henry and others in the Outlook area soon opened my eyes to the value of irrigation.
“We had to get out of the wheat mentality, and irrigation was the message.”
“I'm very appreciative, and thank you for those who viewed me as a suitable candidate and put my nomination forward. Special mention goes to the Saskatchewan Irrigation Projects Association, the Irrigation Crop Diversification Corporation, and the Town of Outlook,
The 500,000 ace irrigation project on the drawing table near Outlook is a “dream come true.’’
On his retirement a street leading from Outlook to the centre was named Tollefson Drive.
Other inductees this year were Kevin Hursh, broadcaster/speaker; Bill Hunter, inland terminals; Dorothy Long, dietitian; and John McKinnnon, animal science.
Tollefson joins six other Moose Jaw region Ag Hall of Famers: John Maharg, Boyd Anderson, George Harlton, Dr. Brynne Rothwell, Grant Devine and Jeff Schoenau.