Canadian Cattle Young Leaders announces 2023 Finalists

Calgary, AB – The Canadian Cattle Young Leaders (CYL) Program, a national youth initiative of the Canadian Cattle Association (CCA), is pleased to announce its 16 finalists for the 2023-2024 program year.

The annual CYL Selections competition took place on August 15, 2023, at the Canadian Beef Industry Conference in Calgary, AB. During the competition, 24 impressive semi-finalists from across Canada, and involved in various roles within the beef supply chain, competed for a spot in the upcoming program year.

Through the Selections competition, semi-finalists rotated through discussions with their peers at six roundtables, each facilitated and judged by representatives from the program’s generous sponsors. Semi-finalists put their skills to the test through thought provoking discussions about timely topics in the beef industry such as environmental sustainability, innovation and technology, succession planning, leadership, support for new entrants and young producers, and much more.

Each finalist will be awarded a $2,000 budget to put towards beef industry travel and learning opportunities of their choice and be paired with a hand-picked industry leader for a nine-month mentorship in their specific area of interest.

“Congratulations to all of this year’s young leaders who did a great job showcasing their passion for our industry and shared thoughtful ideas during the roundtable discussions,” said Nathan Phinney, CCA President. “We had a very impressive slate of applicants for this year’s program, which makes me optimistic for what the future holds for our industry.”

The 2023 finalists, in no particular order, are:

  • British Columbia: Brett Squair (Lumby), Cassie Marchand (Vernon), and Kayla Shallard (Hixon)
  • Alberta: Adeleen Bolduc (Stavely), Ashley Nicholls (Foothills County), Brayden Schmidt (Didsbury), Coleman Nixdorff (Rocky View County), Karlene Yakemchuk (Hairy Hill), Rob Ziegler (Okotoks) and Zoe Gould (Consort)
  • Saskatchewan: Brooke Martin (Piapot)
  • Manitoba: Kristelle Harper (Brandon) and Marianne Sytnyk (Oakburn)
  • Ontario: Kaley Mackie Rodman (Northern Bruce Peninsula)
  • Quebec: Laurie Côté-Sarrazin (Clerval), Patrick Sullivan (Gracefield)

The Canadian Beef Industry Conference was also a special occasion for the 2022-2023 CYLs who graduated the program and were awarded their certificates at the graduation celebration. Since established in 2010, the program has seen over 180 graduates go on to excel in various leadership roles throughout the beef supply chain.

The graduation also saw the unveiling of the Reg Schellenberg Next Generation Legacy Award by the Canadian Cattle Foundation and the Schellenberg family. Click here to read more.

The opportunities offered to the next generation through the Canadian CYL Program would not be possible without the generous support of its Platinum Partner, McDonald’s Canada, Foundation Partners, Cargill, MNP, New Holland, and Elanco, and Gold Partners, Farm Credit Canada, Alltech, and RBC Future Launch.

About the Canadian Cattle Young Leaders Program

Canadian Cattle Young Leaders (CYL) welcomes young people ages 18-35 across Canada, involved in various aspects of the beef supply chain, to be paired with an industry leader in their specific area of interest for a nine-month mentorship. Through mentorship, networking, and travel, the Canadian CYL Program acts as an industry succession planning tool to equip the next generation of leaders with the skills and tools they need to continue to drive the growth and profitability of the Canadian beef industry. Since established by the Canadian Cattle Association in 2010, the program has seen over 180 CYL graduates. Program applications are open annually for ages 18-35 on our website from early January to the end of March. Learn more at

Read more: Canadian Cattle Young Leaders names its 2023 semi-finalists

For further information, contact:
Michelle McMullen
Communications Manager
Canadian Cattle Association
403-451-0931| [email protected]

For a PDF of the news release, click here.