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And, in recognition of his personal efforts, he has been awarded an honorary lifetime membership to the Saskatchewan Institute of Agrologists (SIA).
Mr. Kennedy was one of four deserving individuals and the only Canadian Indian to be presented this distinction at the SIA's annual convention in Saskatoon. The honor, delivered by president of the institute, Mr. Tom Lawrence, commemorates him for his overall involvement in SIAP and recognizes the many valuable contributions he has made to the growth of Saskatchewan Indian Agriculture over the past ten years.
Alex Kennedy has been actively involved in the Saskatchewan Indian Agriculture Program since it was first struck up in 1971. At the time, the program consisted merely of a committee chaired by Mr. Kennedy and the initial intention was to take an inventory of the things available to Indian farmers and to establish a means of ensuring that they were accessible to these farmers. However, due much to the hard work and dedication of Alex Kennedy, this committee soon developed into a full scale government assistance program. Through his extensive involvement in federal negotiations in 1974, he became a prominent figure in the event which marked the actual birth of SIAP.
The success of these negotiations ultimately led to Treasury Board approval of the program and the establishment of a Board of Directors, once again chaired by Alex Kennedy. He retired this chairmanship in 1978, but fortunately still remains an active participant and a valuable consultant to others involved in the program.
In short, Alex Kennedy was in the forefront throughout the entire developing years of SIAP and he greatly contributed to its successes through his enthusiastic participation - enthusiasm which he genuinely expressed when he accepted his plaque at the SIA annual convention.
"I humbly accept this lifetime membership for it has been my privilege to serve the Indian farmers of this province," said Kennedy to the many institute members in attendance. "However, I would like to share this honor with my wife Josephine, Dr. C.M. Williams of Saskatoon and Murdock Mackay of Prince Albert for they too dedicated many years to the development of SIAP. Through my present efforts in the coordination of public relations and communications, I will continue to be involved in Saskatchewan Agriculture. Thank you."