Ken Knox, former Ontario deputy minister of agriculture, has been honoured for his lifetime of achievements with an appointment as Member to the Order of Canada. The Governor-General’s citation was for fostering a culture of innovation that influenced the Ontario Public Service over the past few decades, notably in the agricultural sector.
The Order of Canada is one of the country’s highest civilian honours. Its Companions, Officers and Members take to heart the Latin motto of the Order: DESIDERANTES MELIOREM PATRIAM -- "They desire a better country.”
The well-known civil servant has led many high-profile initiatives such as the creation of Agricorp, the Advanced Agricultural Leadership Program, the Ontario Genomics Institute, the Ontario Science and Innovation Council, and the Vineland Research and Innovation Centre.
Most recently, Knox served as chair of the Ontario Food Terminal Board during a chaotic period of the pandemic, serving from January 17, 2019 until October 26, 2020. His leadership helped steer the terminal, a critical hub for receiving, selling and providing cold storage for both domestic and foreign produce.
Hazel and John Robinson were also named as Members of the Order of Canada for their leadership in Prince Edward Island’s agricultural industry and for their contributions to documenting local history in the community.
Daughter Mary Robinson, current president of the Canadian Federation of Agriculture tweeted: “We’ve watched our parents volunteer in countless ways, publish a community history, manage woodlands, help build a family farm business, mentor, give, be involved in church and be exceptional parents too.”
Source: Govenor General of Canada December 29, 2021 news release