Agriculture and Rural Economic Development Advisor with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, Catherine Oosterbaan, was named the 2018 EDCO Young Influencer of the Year Award winner at the 2019 EDCO Conference in Toronto last month.
This award recognizes the next thought leader or community organizer who is committed to facilitating change and fostering economic development in their community. EDCO’s Awards of Excellence program aims to recognize and celebrate the outstanding work in economic development happening around the province of Ontario.
Catherine Oosterbaan has been an Advisor with OMAFRA’s Regional Economic Development Branch since January of 2015. Catherine works out of the Midhurst office and currently supports clients in the County of Simcoe, District Municipality of Muskoka and Haliburton County. Catherine also works on many special projects within the Ministry. Her work is largely foundational, helping rural municipalities and organizations understand their economy and the context they’re operating in to strategically prioritize their actions in the face of limited resources. She fosters economic development ecosystems from the ground up by working with stakeholders to refine, and in many cases define, their vision and turn it into a viable project, making her a well-deserving recipient of the award.
Prior to Catherine’s time with OMAFRA, she held economic development positions with the County of Simcoe and the City of Barrie.