Remembering Denise Maurice – Agronomist, Industry Builder and Friend to Many

Many of us woke Thursday morning to tragic news of the surprise passing of Canola Council of Canada , VP of Crop Production, Denise Maurice.  A highly respected agronomist and a true friend to many, Denise will be sadly missed.

What was so unique about Denise is her passion and fire for agronomy and agriculture.  Denise had the energy to fill a room based on her charisma and emotion.  If you have ever been in the field with her or heard her present a slide deck you clearly understand that her charisma was also packaged with a very strong technical background.  Denise knew how to talk to farmers in a way that allowed them to not only understand the “what” but also the “why.”  Being able to speak to your audience whether they are farmers or canola breeders is a skill that very few master in their careers and Denise did.

I have included a couple videos below that I shot with Denise in 2010 and you can see immediately the passion, charisma and love that she had for agriculture and the correct knowledge transfer to to the farmer and industry.  Rest in peace Denise, you will be missed.

Denise talks about the 2010 Canola Council combine clinic
If you cannot see the below video, click here

Denise discusses different agronomic strategies based on the challenges in 2010
if you cannot see the below video, click here.


Shaun Haney

Shaun Haney is the founder of He creates content regularly and hosts RealAg Radio on Rural Radio 147 every weekday at 4:30 PM est. @shaunhaney


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Susan Cline

Denise touched so many people, with her bright, vibrant way of approaching life. I was lucky to be among them. This is very, very sad news and my condolences go to her children, who were the world to her, and family and many friends. I got to know Denise at Viterra after the merger of AU and the Pool. She impressed everyone. She was smart, funny and deeply caring. Watching the videos, I am reminded of her deep relationships with farmers. She told me many times how she enjoyed visiting farmers, walking their fields with them, examining the soil and plants…and sharing knowledge. She was an amazing researcher and teacher. I am blessed to have known her as a friend and colleague. May her star keep on shining!

Garry Ropchan

I consider myself to have been blessed that I went through two decades of agricultural research and extension work in Alberta starting in 1990. During that time I had probably the best group of mentors that we and Alberta producers could have had supporting us. People like Elston Solberg, Phil Thomas, John Harapiak (whom we also have now lost) and of course Denise Maurice.

I always considered myself so fortunate whenever I had the opportunity to both hear her speak at a conference or meeting or even more lucky, when it was to talk with Denise one on one. My knowledge of weeds and weed control is still based on her work, I still refer to her trials for advice on weed control to producers. Agronomists of Denise’s stature are so rare, her agronomic understanding combined with her humblemess and wonderful sense of humor!

Those of you who ever had the chance to do a field walk with her will know what we have lost, or who ever had the chance to attend the Ellerslie Diagnostic School when Denise was the Provincial Weed Specialist, I would learn more from Denise about weeds and herbicides in that hour than from all my other sources the rest of the year.

I will probably think of her most at Halloween time in the future, remembering her dressed up as the “Weed Witch”!

My world just got a bit smaller with this news…………..


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