Assiniboine’s Prairie Innovation Centre for Sustainable Agriculture is welcoming a $125,000 donation from Crane Steel Structures, a well-known Brandon and Westman business leader.
“We couldn’t be prouder and more excited to play a role in bringing the Prairie Innovation Centre to life in Brandon,” said PJ Crane of Crane Steel Structures. “Agriculture is such a huge part of Westman and it’s where Crane Steel Structures got its start as a company more than 40 years ago. Some of our best people have come through Assiniboine Community College’s programs and knowing that this Centre will provide opportunities for generations to come is very rewarding.”
The Prairie Innovation Centre is Assiniboine’s vision for the future of agriculture in Manitoba, and will address industry and economic needs in this important sector. The Centre, which aims to expand seats in agriculture-related programming from 300 to more than 800, will be located at Assiniboine’s North Hill campus in Brandon.
“The Prairie Innovation Centre is Assiniboine’s response to a growing labour market need in agriculture. It’s necessary to ensure this important sector achieves its full economic potential, and we know that Brandon and Westman is the right home for the Centre,” said Mark Frison, President of Assiniboine. “It’s good for the agriculture sector and it’s good for the community. We’re thrilled that Crane Steel Structures sees that and has come aboard with their support. Community and business leaders are crucial in bringing this project to life.”
The Westman landscape is dotted with Crane Steel buildings—the company has played a role in some of the largest commercial buildings in Westman. Crane Steel Structures founder, Paul Crane, was a recent recipient of an Assiniboine Honorary Diploma in 2020. He served as a member and then chair of the Assiniboine Board of Governors in the 1990s, and later as the president for the Assiniboine Foundation (’99 – ’02).