Our hearts are heavy this week as we mourn the loss of a dear friend and mentor, Dr. Wayne Roberts, who died peacefully on January 20th.

Wayne was a true leader and an inspiration in the food systems world, affectionately referred to as the Godfather of food policy in Canada. Wayne advocated for ‘people-centred food policy’ in all that he did.

He left an incredible imprint, not only on Farm to Cafeteria Canada, but also on so many other organizations and individuals across Canada – and around the world – who work tirelessly to make our food systems and planet healthier, sustainable, and just. We know we are not alone in our grieving, and our thoughts and hearts go out to all those whose lives were touched by Wayne. Most of all to Wayne’s wife, Lori, and his girls and granddaughter.

Wayne was a part of Farm to Cafeteria Canada since the early days. As a beloved member of our Leadership Council, he held a special place for farm to school in his heart and continued to champion and support our work, sharing ideas and inspiration until his final days.

Wayne was an exemplary leader not just in the world of food policy, but also as a human being. He was thoughtful and kind, carrying himself with grace and integrity everywhere he went. Most of all, he was FUN. He had a playful wit, wonderful stories and anecdotes, and a smile that could undoubtedly light up any room. This is how we will remember him.

Wayne, you carried a torch that has lit our way and sparked many new paths. As we step into 2021, we know the future is brighter for it. We are forever grateful for your contributions, insight, and the precious times spent together.

The updates shared in the rest of this newsletter are, in no small part, a testament to your continuous support and leadership over the years. It is an honour and privilege to share them in dedication to you.

Rest easy, dear friend.

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