The Ontario Co-operative Association

The Ontario Co-operative Association

October 08, 2009 08:00 ET

Bernie Daly Remembered and Honoured by Ontario Co-operators

GUELPH, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 8, 2009) - Ontario co-operators will commemorate the lifetime contribution of the late Bernie Daly as part of the Ontario Co-operative Association (On Co-op) conference and awards ceremony on Oct. 14 at the Burlington, Ont. Royal Botanical Gardens.

Daly, who was a strong advocate and talented advisor of Ontario agricultural co-operatives, died in March at age 57. He was Ontario Region manager of GROWMARK, Inc. at the time.

"His passing leaves a void in the Ontario co-operative sector," writes Dennis Deters, Senior Vice-President, Member Relations & Corporate Services, The Co-operators Group Limited. Daly served as a delegate on The Co-operators Ontario Region Committee since 2004. "He was a values-based, sincere individual and he was a great promoter of the co-operative sector."

Daly began his career in co-operatives in 1979. During difficult financial years of the United Co-operatives of Ontario two decades ago, he helped the agricultural co-operative system reorganize to continue to serve Ontario rural communities. He continued to use his creativity to help reinvent agricultural co-operatives to adapt to changes in the industry. "He encouraged us to always explore different solutions," says North Wellington Co-operative Services Inc. General Manager Kelly Boyle. "It is this ability which makes our co-operative structure unique."

Daly also served on the boards of UPI Energy LP, FS PARTNERS, Norfolk FS, Great Lakes Grain Inc., and the Ontario Agri Business Association, and served as a GROWMARK representative to On Co-op.

Colleagues say what made him a particularly effective leader was his recognition of community's importance; in 2001 he received The City of Waterloo Volunteer Award and the Waterloo Minor Fastball Association Award. GROWMARK, which nominated Daly for recognition, created a Bernie Daly memorial fund to support the development and growth of Ontario Co-operative Young Leaders, a program he also promoted.

The Lifetime Achievement Special Recognition will be presented to Daly's family. He left behind wife Sandy and sons Ryan and Matt.

Eight other co-operators and co-operative organizations will also be recognized for their contributions to the Ontario Co-operative movement.

The 9th annual Co-op Conference draws up to 250 co-operative and credit union directors, employees, and supporters from across the province. Its theme is "Co-ops Work: Exceptional Solutions for Exceptional Times."

On Co-op, based in Guelph, Ont., develops, unites and promotes co-operatives throughout the province of Ontario. Its mission is to lead, cultivate and connect co-operatives. Visit for more information on the association, co-op conference and gala.

Contact Information

  • Ontario Co-operative Association
    Mark Ventry
    Membership and Communications Manager
    1-888-745-5521/519.763.8271 x30