2007 Press Releases
Organic Trade Association names Managing Director
Ottawa, ON (March 27, 2007)—The Organic Trade Association (OTA) has selected Matthew Holmes as managing director for OTA in Canada. Holmes will begin this new position in April.
“After a coast-to-coast search, OTA was pleased to find such an enthusiastic candidate with knowledge of organic issues and the leadership skills necessary for OTA in Canada at this time,” said Caren Wilcox, executive director of the Organic Trade Association. “Hiring Matthew brings to fruition the vision OTA’s Board and members had for additional attention for OTA’s Canadian members.”
“I’m honoured to be selected to work in an organization that was founded to serve the organic business community in Canada and in the US,” said Holmes. “I’m looking forward to the challenge of building OTA’s membership and serving the needs of the Canadian organic business community.”
Reporting to OTA’s Executive Director, Holmes will have overall responsibility for implementation of all activities and operations of the association in Canada. OTA’s liaison in Canada, Stephanie Wells, will continue her work on behalf of the association as well. Among key priorities Holmes will face will be building membership in OTA, and working to ensure the new Canadian regulations are implemented smoothly without disrupting the growing organic business community.
Holmes brings to OTA a unique set of skills and experience in the organic and policy sectors. Most recently, he has held the position of acting executive director of the Atlantic Canadian Organic Regional Network (ACORN), promoting the growth of the organic market in Atlantic Canada and representing the region nationally during consultations on Canada’s new federal regulation. While at ACORN, he increased new memberships approximately 20 percent. He also serves on the editorial board of The Canadian Organic Grower magazine. His articles on organic themes have appeared there, as well as in Gastronomica: The Journal of Food and Culture and other publications.
His background also includes social policy analysis and development with the federal government in Ottawa, and he has worked as the special assistant in government relations and communications for the president of York University in Toronto. He is a graduate of Mount Allison University and holds an M.A through the interdisciplinary program in Contemporary Social and Political Thought at the University of Victoria.
Holmes will divide his time between the offices of the OTA in Ottawa and Sackville, NB.
The Organic Trade Association (OTA), which was founded in 1985 by Americans and Canadians, is the membership-based business association for the organic industry in North America. OTA’s mission is to promote and protect the growth of organic trade to benefit the environment, farmers, the public, and the economy. OTA’s vision is that organic products are a significant part of everyday life, enhancing people’s lives and the global environment.