Calgary – Today, BMO Bank of Montreal and the Calgary Stampede recognized 17 southern Alberta families who best represent the values of the family farmer to our society. Celebrating its 19th anniversary, the BMO Farm Family Awards were created to promote a renewed urban-rural relationship and focus on recognizing the contribution to the enhancement of quality of life as a family unit.


"The BMO Farm Family Awards play an integral role in highlighting the many innovations and skilled business and environmental practices of Alberta farmers and ranchers," says Susan Brown, senior vice president, Alberta and Northwest Territories division, BMO Bank of Montreal. “These families are outstanding examples of dedication, combining the traditions of the past with modern agri-business practices, to continue to support Alberta’s economy.”


The Alberta minister of agriculture, Oneil Carlier, attended alongside Bill Gray, president and chairman of the board, Calgary Stampede, and Brown to congratulate the winners of the 2015 BMO Farm Family Awards.


“Alberta farmers and ranchers are the backbone of our thriving agriculture sector and rural communities,” says Carlier. “These awards are a great way to recognize their incredible commitment to family, community and agriculture in our province.”


Each year, the municipal districts in southern Alberta nominate one family. Selected families, who best display the qualities of a Farm Family, are brought to the Stampede for the BMO Farm Family Awards, which includes a reception, greetings from Alberta's Minister of Agriculture, brunch, awards presentation, and family photograph session. The winning families are then treated to the afternoon Stampede Rodeo.

“The BMO Farm Family Awards are integral to the Stampede, our community, the province and the world,” says Gray. “They reflect the importance of sustainable agriculture and help increase the knowledge of sustainability in agriculture by bridging the gap between urban and rural communities.”


The winners of the 2015 BMO Farm Family Awards are:


Farm Family

Family Name


Bar XT Farms

J.R. & Nikki Thompson

Cardston County

Specialty Seeds Ltd.

Will & Jean Van Roessel

County of Forty Mile

DRT Farms Ltd

Darren & Kim Taylor

County of Lethbridge

Brookside Farms Ltd.

John Dyck Family

County of Newell No. 4

Ken & Nora Balog Family Farm

Ken & Nora Balog

County of Warner

Peter-Built Farms Inc.

Trevor & Janet Biemans

Cypress County

Hansen Farms

Harold, Rick & Doug Hansen & Families

MD of Foothills #31

Brylor Ranch

Bryan & Sherry Mackenzie

MD of Pincher Creek

Pepneck Family Farm

Pepneck Family

MD of Taber

The Hall Farm

Roy and Karen Hall

MD of Willow Creek

Dennis & Joanne Overguard Family Farm & Ranch

Dennis & Joanne Overguard

Mountain View County

Rockyview Farm

Eric Longeway Family

Rocky View County

Quast Family Farm

Oscar, Glenn, Michelle & Brian Quast

Special Area #2

Twin R Ranching

Ted Mundt Family

Special Area #3

Riggs Farm Ltd.

Terry Riggs & Family

Starland County

Groves Family Farm

Dale & Diane Groves

Vulcan County

Walker’s Farm

Ernest & Joyce Walker

Wheatland County


Each family was presented with a personalized farm gate sign and tickets to the Calgary Stampede Rodeo.


Detailed biographies are available at


About the Calgary Stampede

The Calgary Stampede celebrates the people, the animals, the land, the traditions and the values that make up the unique spirit of the west. The Calgary Stampede contributes to the quality of life in Calgary and southern Alberta through our world-renowned 10-day Stampede, year-round facilities, western events and several youth and agriculture programs. Exemplifying the theme We’re Greatest Together; we are a volunteer-supported, not-for-profit community organization that preserves and promotes western heritage and values. All revenue is reinvested into Calgary Stampede programs and facilities.


About BMO and the Calgary Stampede

BMO Bank of Montreal’s ties to the Calgary Stampede are long and remarkable. The relationship between BMO and the Calgary Stampede is the oldest business relationship in Western Canada, dating back to 1884. BMO has been the banker to the Calgary Exhibition since 1899 when lands were christened at Victoria Park.  The Agricultural Society had purchased 94 acres of land from the Dominion of Canada and built a race track, cattle sheds and an exhibition building. BMO continued as the banker in 1912 when the first rodeo took place and it became the Calgary Exhibition and Stampede.


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For more information, please contact:

Jacqueline Meyler

Kathleen Savage

Media Relations Coordinator

Media Relations, Corporate Communications

Calgary Stampede

BMO Financial Group

T 403.261.0338

T 416.867.3992

C 403.805.5592

C 416.453.5823