Elaine Froese has been called the ‘farm whisperer’, but she should be called the ‘mother of farm succession’. For nearly 25 years, she has changed the conversation about transition and business planning by understanding and including the emotional factors affecting farm families.
Starting in the 1980s, when farms were focused only on the farm finances, Froese was insightful and realized that relationships on the farm were a crucial part of successful farming. She combined her home economics background with mediation training and farm experience to coach family farms on how to address their people challenges that no one was talking about. Her approach was innovative and necessary.
Froese has been a columnist with Grainews for 26 years, and five years with Progressive Dairyman. She has written five books, offers podcasts, her blog is distributed to over 7,500 people on a regular basis, and she has created over 19 tools, available for free on her website in the farm-family toolkit.
She has turned her experiences as a coach to over 1,000 small-business families into practical tools. Her influence is spreading to other industries and families in other countries with several of her tools translated into other languages.
Froese has become a beloved speaker throughout Canada and the world, creating a sense of hope and pathway for farm families to kickstart conversations, to deal with what she calls the “undiscussabulls.”
She has also trained consultants and coaches in Australia, U.S. and Canada. In the last few years, she has become a mentor for new transition coaches and speakers.
Froese is a charter member of Canadian Association of Farm Advisors (CAFA) in Brandon. For over 15 years, she has collaborated extensively with CAFA, FCC, FMC and Country Guide to deliver quality content to farmers. 4-H Canada named her their most distinguished alumna in 2018. Wilson Loree, on behalf of Farm Management Canada, recognized her excellence in farm management in 2018.
Froese farms with her very supportive husband, Wes, son Ian, and daughter in-law, Kendra, near Boissevain.
Froese likely gained insight on how to become a trailblazer from mother, Lois Edie, fellow 150 Manitoba Women Trailblazer Award recipient.