As an agency of the Government of Alberta, the Alberta Livestock and Meat Agency Ltd. (ALMA) reports to the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development (ARD). ALMA is governed by a Board of Directors that provides leadership to the organization and directs corporate governance practices.
Board members maintain their independence while working with ALMA management, a primary principle for successful corporate governance.
Governance is one of the primary roles of the Board of directors (the “Board”). ALMA is committed to responsible corporate governance practices as they clarify the role of the Board and management, giving each a clear understanding of where responsibilities start and stop.
Governance is evolving and the Board is committed to review and update the Board Governance Handbook regularly to ensure the most current governance standards and best practices are in place to serve the interests of the Minister and all stakeholders.
Mandate of the Board:
The Board is responsible to the Minister of ARD. The roles and responsibilities of the Board are set out in the Mandate and Roles document.
Composition of the Board:
As of March 31, 2012, the Board consisted of 11 Independent directors. The Minister of ARD appoints all Board members. The Board is a competency based board with varied skills and experience. The Board Chair and Committee Chairs are independent members.
Board members adhere to the Board Governance Handbook. New Board members are provided a copy of the Board Governance Handbook as soon as they assume their duties. The Board Code of Conduct and Conflict of Interest Policy (the Code) applies to the Board of Directors, committees to the Board and third party contractors to ALMA. Each Board member completes a Conflict of Interest Declaration Form, signifying they have read and understood the Code, declaring any conflict that would put themselves, their business or personal relationships in a situation of potential benefit interest or any other actual or perceived conflict of interest with ALMA or its stakeholders.
The Board and committees meet as often as required, as well as hold in-camera sessions. Board members participate in seminars and conferences to further enhance their skills in dealing with corporate business issues and governance.
Audit, Finance and Risk Committee:
This committee assists the Board in its oversight responsibilities on matters relating to fiscal management and financial reporting, internal controls, internal and external audit and compliance with applicable laws and regulations. It also oversees ALMA Enterprise Risk Management process and reporting to the Board.
This Committee shall make recommendations on communication aspects to the President and CEO. It oversees: the development of communications strategic plans and the development and management of protocols for dissemination of both internal and external ALMA related / generated information. It promotes, encourages and continually strives to improve communications and ensure that effective communications are maintained at all levels of the Agency; reviews policies relating to communications and recommends necessary revisions; and increases the value to industry by increasing the connection to, and participation in, an information sharing, collaborative communication effort focused on stakeholder engagement.
This committee assists the Board in its oversight responsibilities on matters relating to directional and operational affairs of ALMA.
Governance and Human Resources Committee:
This committee assists the Board in fulfilling its corporate governance and overseeing management responsibilities. It makes recommendations to the Board with respect to: corporate governance practices, committee structure and memberships, evaluations of the Board and its committees; review of the Mandate and Roles Document and the current Code of Conduct Policy; Board succession planning; and communication process between the Board and ALMA’s stakeholders.
Market Access Committee:
This committee will develop and lead strategies that enhance and expand market access and further develop specific markets and market segments for Alberta (Canadian) livestock and meat products.
Programs and Services Committee:
This committee oversees the administration of ALMA’s programs as managed through its Divisions, including the review and approval processes of the suite of funding programs and strategic initiatives. The committee reviews and makes recommends to the Board on those program applications with values greater than their approval limits.
Board Technical Review Sub-Committees
ALMA has three technical review sub-committees. They are:
These sub-committees report to the Programs and Services Committee. The sub-committees review project proposals within the context of the specific subject area (research, industry development or commercialization) and provide recommendations on project applications.
Board Advisory Committees:
ALMA has five advisory committees:
The role of these advisory committees is to bring forward industry issues of concern to the Board and to management of ALMA. They provide a forum to share information and ideas within a positive and cooperative environment.