The Honourable Lyle Vanclief is a unique individual and an outstanding example of what it means to be a committed Canadian. When we think of his consecutive career and what Lyle brought to Canadian agriculture, the words Big Gun, comes to mind.
Born in Ameliasburg, Prince Edward County, Ontario, Lyle grew up with the best of Canadian values. From the tender age of 12, he has held up the principles of that great rural youth organization, namely the Canadian 4-H Club. In time Lyle Vanclief was to become a perfect example of an exceptional youth achieving his full potential as Canada’s Agriculture and Agri-food minister and his election as Member of Parliament for Prince Edwards-Hastings in 1988 and subsequent re-elections in 1993, 1997, and 2000.
An important leap in his life’s journey toward that exalted goal happened when he attended the University of Guelph. It was there that Lyle’s natural leadership abilities were highlighted as OAC class president and elected president of the University Student Union Council. After graduating in 1966, he returned to his home farm to work with his father. Through intelligence and hard work, Lyle took the 148 acres of crops and livestock to 1600 acres of owned and rented crop and livestock production.
During his time as Minister of Agriculture and Agri-food Canada (1997-2003), the industry became more focused on the future, less reliant on government subsidies, and has a greater capacity to adjust for change.
As parliamentary secretary to the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food (1993 and 1996), he played a key role in defining the government of Canada’s response to changes in international trade rules. He also served as chairman of the standing committee on Agriculture and Agri-Food and was an elected Member of the House of Commons from 1988 to 2004.
It is impossible to condense the numerous accomplishments of The Hon. Lyle Vanclief’s life but it is clear that this dedicated gentleman has brought the highest of standards in all he endeavored to accomplish. His remarkable career tells the story of an individual who believed that he had something to give. And give he did!