Philanthropist and community leader receives Economic Development Award

In this Nov. 16, 2009 file photo, chickens stand in their cages at a farm near Stuart, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall, File)

Local philanthropist and community leader, Joe Hudson has been named as this year's recipient of the Bill Thake Memorial Award for Economic Development Leadership, also called the Warden’s Award. He will be honoured for his many achievements over the decades at the 15th Annual Leeds Grenville Economic Development Summit on Friday, November 17th at the North Grenville Municipal Centre.

Invest Leed and Grenville explain Mr. Hudson's story, saying more than 80 years ago, a teenage Joe Hudson bought some laying hens for a high school project. This action would, eventually, transform the dairy and crop-based Burnbrae Farms into one of the largest egg producers in the country.

"We are very proud," said daughter Margaret Hudson, President of Burnbrae Farms. 

A letter of support for the nomination signed by Elizabethtown-Kitley Mayor Brant Burrow, states "Mr. Hudson has been a fundamental contributor to economic development in the area for over 50 years."

Mr. Hudson has earned many awards during a career that dates back to the 1940s, including the Golden Pencil Award, recognizing individuals who have made a significant and worthwhile contribution to improving their community and the Canadian food industry overall. Other awards include the We Care Hall of Fame, the Canadian Grocery Business Hall of Fame and the Ontario Agriculture Hall of Fame.

Burnbrae Farms has become an established and integral part of Canadian agribusiness. Their eggs and egg products are in grocery stores and restaurants across the country. Burnbrae Farms is one of Canada's Best Managed Companies (Platinum Level) and employs approximately 1,700 workers across several provinces, including 400 employees at their facilities in Lyn and Brockville.

To attend the event in which this award will be presented, those interested will have to go online to and register before Friday, November 17th, 2023. The tickets are $50.00.

With files by CFRA's Connor Ray