Yellow canola field with blue sky and white clouds

Staff & Board


Meet our team of passionate people who share the common goal of building agriculture literacy in Manitoba. 

Katharine Cherewyk

Executive Director

I love knowing that AITC-M’s school programs and resources help contribute to a more informed society where consumers and voters can make smart decisions about the food they eat, and the role that agriculture plays in feeding the world.

Kira Rowat

Program Manager

I enjoy being able to combine my enthusiasm for inquiry-based learning and agriculture to create and deliver accurate, balanced and current hands-on programs and resources for Manitoba educators and students.

Jessica Painter

Education Specialist

As a teacher myself, I understand the need for relevant and engaging resources to effectively deliver accurate information to our students. I'm thrilled to be able to connect educators and industry leaders to help shape the next generation of informed participants in agriculture and society.

John Gaudes

Communications Manager

As someone who grew up cooking and loving food, I'm thrilled to help educate kids about where their food comes from and share the amazing stories that Manitoba agriculture has to offer.

Ryan McBride

Partner Relations Manager

I’m inspired daily by our talented team and the passion of our partners and supporters. We’ve got big plans ahead, and I’m excited to put my background in communications and fundraising to work building relationships that will strengthen our industry and shape our future.

Adelle Gervin

Program Manager

I want to educate students on the importance of agriculture and how it affects our everyday lives. This industry provides so many opportunities, I hope all students can see themselves pursuing a career in agriculture.

Larissa Peitsch

Program & Volunteer Manager

I feel privileged to be a part of AITC-M and the amazing experience of watching the eyes of students light up when they learn something new about agriculture, the importance of food, and where their food comes from.

Renee Reimer

Finance & Admin Manager

I grew up on a farm and experienced firsthand where food comes from. I want more students to have that opportunity so they can make informed decisions and think critically about what they hear about food and farming.

Christine Kulas

Program Coordinator

I am extremely passionate about my community and our incredible agriculture industry. I am also deeply committed to education. Combining these two at AITC-M is a powerful driver for my ongoing commitment to our province and our students.

Bianca Byers

Program Coordinator

I come from an agricultural background, and I have seen the disconnect between consumers and their food. I hope to help educate students about agriculture so they can fully understand its importance.

Alvin Dyck

Garden Education Specialist

In my career as a teacher, I was always looking for engaging programs and activities that made learning exciting. I found that with AITC-M and Little Green Thumbs. Now I’m thrilled to be a part of AITC-M, and “growing” their gardening programs to help reach and support as many educators as possible!

Our Board

AITC-M’s Board of Directors is an elected board of up to 15 members representing a cross-section of the agriculture industry in Manitoba. Each of our board members is dedicated to delivering accurate, balanced and current information about agriculture to Manitoba teachers and students. Our Board holds our organization accountable to this principle, and to our upholding our mission, vision and values in all we do.

Everyone on our Board is an AITC-M Member.

Executive Committee

Laura Holtmann



Once a city girl, now a farmer – I am passionate about agriculture. Through AITC-M programs, I look forward to sharing positive information about food production with children, parents and educators!

Bonnie Bain

Vice President

Farm Credit Canada

Farm raised. Farm fed. Farm fueled. AITC-M allows me to share my passion for ag!

Laurel Lyons

Past President

Government of Canada

AITC-M does amazing work by creating synergy between the agricultural community and educators. Having a better understanding of agriculture is important for everyone.

Kevin Hamblin


Royal Bank of Canada

I'm proud to serve on the Agriculture in the Classroom-Manitoba Board of Directors because I believe in our vision. Together, we are developing a deeper appreciation of the importance of agriculture to our province's social and economic wellbeing.

Patsy Michiels


Government of Canada

Since today’s students are our future leaders, decision-makers and voters, I feel it is important that they have an understanding and appreciation of where their food comes from and how vital agriculture is to our communities. AITC-M works hard to provide opportunities for teachers and students to learn about agriculture, and I am very proud to be a part of it.


Carson Callum

Manitoba Beef Producers

Growing up on a farm, I got first hand knowledge on how food is grown and raised. I think work by AITC-M is crucial to ensure that knowledge continues to be delivered to those that don’t have that strong connection to the farm. 

Brent Derkatch

Canterra Seeds

I believe it’s critically important for students to have the seeds of knowledge of agriculture planted in classrooms across the province. I’m proud of my farm and agriculture background and support the amazing work done by AITC-M.

Gail Eckert

Summit Search Group

I believe that through education, our youth will come to better understand where our food comes from, both locally and globally, and how they may play a role in keeping our food supply sustainable for future generations. I am proud to be a part of AITC-M as they work to share this message.

Trish Jordan

Bayer CropScience

I am passionate about Canadian agriculture and the people who work in this industry!  AITC-M shares that passion and the positive story of farmers and how they are committed to growing safe food for society. If you believe in Canadian agriculture and the people who make it happen, you simply must promote and encourage the efforts of AITC-M.

Kristen Matwychuk

Manitoba Pork

Growing up near my grandparent’s farm, I had the opportunity to learn about agriculture from a young age. This led to my passion for building agriculture literacy through storytelling, hands-on learning activities, training and food. I’m proud to support AITC-M in their work to ensure Manitoba students have the same opportunity.

Jennifer McCombe-Theroux

Manitoba Pulse & Soybean Growers

I have a deep respect for agriculture, our Industry and lifestyle from working within the Ag Industry but also by participating on our family farm. Food, eating and nourishment is something we all unanimously have a connection to, but how that food is grown is a big unknown for many. 

Jared Munro

Manitoba Agricultural Services Corporation

Growing up on a farm and working in industry, I’ve been fortunate to see the benefits agriculture provides to our way of life, economy, and environment. Not everyone has this opportunity and that’s where AITC-M comes in! I am proud to support AITC-M inspire future leaders, innovators, consumers, and workers about the many opportunities in agriculture.

Al Raine

Retired Industry Representative

I grew up in the city, but the family vegetable farm was a short bike ride away. Since then, I've watched the distance grow between Manitobans and food production. Getting involved with AITC-M is the best way I know to build awareness about the importance of agriculture for the next generation.

Bonnie Schmidt

Manitoba Public Insurance

Gina Sunderland

Manitoba Chicken Producers

I love food, science and am excited to help students learn how to eat healthy food.

Join our Staff

Interested in becoming a part of our organization? Check for job postings here. 

Join our Board

Who is eligible to run to be an AITC-M Director?

Anyone who is:

  • A member of Agriculture in the Classroom-Manitoba
    • Someone who is a member in good standing thirty days prior to the Annual General Meeting held annually in April. For information on membership, visit our Donate page.
  • 18 years of age
  • A resident of Manitoba

How long is the term for an AITC-M Director?

Each director is elected for a three-year term. There are currently no limits on the number of terms that can be served. Directors take office at the Reorganizational Meeting held shortly after the AGM. The board has three meetings a year (Winnipeg and/or rural) plus the Annual General Meeting.

When are the director election dates for AITC-M?

Elections are held every year at the April Annual General Meeting.

What procedures are followed in electing AITC-M Directors?

  • At the AGM, when the number of nominees does not exceed the number of positions available for election, the chair of the Nominating Committee shall declare nominees elected by acclamation.
  • When there are more nominees than positions, an election will take place
  • Voting shall be by secret ballot at the AGM amongst the members present
  • Ballots are counted at the meeting and new directors announced immediately

If you have any questions, please contact Katharine Cherewyk by phone at 204-782-4575 or email at

Submit your nomination

To complete a nomination package, please fill out the Expression of Interest online form below or submit the downloadable form, a photo and 150-word biography to the attention of the Nominating Committee at