Roy Atkinson, colourful founding president of the National Farmers Union, has died. He was 92.
He used his platform as president of the Saskatchewan Farmers Union to push for the NFU which was launched in 1969.
It brought together the Ontario, Manitoba, B.C. and Saskatchewan Farmers Unions, with the support of the Maritime organizations.
Atkinson then served as the NFU’s first national president until 1978.
He was a thorn in the side of federal politicians and other farm organizations such as the Canadian Federation of Agriculture, the Western Grain Producers Association and the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association because he was outspoken and leaned to the far left of Canadian economics.
He was named to the Order of Canada in 2002.