For nearly 35 years, Janice Tranberg has been a well-known presence within the agricultural industry. She continues to make her mark as the president and CEO of both the National Cattle Feeders Association (NCFA) and the Alberta Cattle Feeders Association (ACFA).
Throughout her career, Janice Tranberg has worked in many areas within the agriculture sector. Tranberg began her career studying horticulture at Olds College, followed by an interior plant maintenance position.
Then after a severe car accident, where she suffered several injuries, Tranberg switched her professional path.
“I broke my hip, I broke every bone in my face except my lower jaw and I suffered a blood clot to my lungs. That’s when I knew a physical job probably wasn’t in the cards for me,” Tranberg said.
She returned to post-secondary at the University of Saskatchewan, obtained a master’s in molecular biology and started working in the biotechnology sector with Performance Plants, then moved to Ag-West Bio and finally CropLife Canada. However, Tranberg felt that her skills were better used elsewhere.
“Even though I love science, I realized that’s not where my strengths were. I started working to see where I could use my strengths, which were more around communications and relationship building—those kind of things,” Tranberg said.
Through multiple networking events, Tranberg looked for opportunities to advance into communications. Tranberg transitioned into a position in regulatory affairs and later into government affairs. Tranberg only went up from there, eventually working as CropLife Canada’s vice-president of Western Canada.
After six years with CropLife Canada, she proceeded to work with the Government of Saskatchewan alongside the Ministry of Agriculture and then as the executive director with SaskCanola.
Now, as the president and CEO of the National and Alberta Cattle Feeders Association, Tranberg continues to make strides in the agricultural world. With the NCFA and the ACFA, Tranberg says their focus is on strengthening their advocacy for the cattle industry, building closer relationships with their members and creating youth engagement.
With agriculture being primarily a male-dominated field, Tranberg has also emphasized the importance of having diverse voices in the industry.
“When I first started in this industry, I would go to conferences and meetings and count the number of women in the room,” said Tranberg.
In a room of 20 or 30 men, Tranberg observed only one or two women. But over the past 20 years, Tranberg has seen more women coming into the field.
“I strongly feel that it’s the diversity of the voice that has improved communications going forward. Not that women are better than … but because women bring a different perspective sometimes and we need both those perspectives. That’s what makes us stronger—having both,” said Tranberg.
It’s not only the voices of women that are needed but also people from different age groups, genders and backgrounds, she added. Tranberg believes that with diversity comes multiple perspectives, which makes a stronger community.
“As women in leadership, let’s take that responsibility seriously. How do we make it a priority in our lives to help others and to build up that diversity?” says Tranberg.