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Farm Life Welcomes New Advisor to Our Team

PETERBOROUGH, ON – Farm Life Financial Planning Group (Farm Life) today announced Bernie Kottelenberg as its newest advisor to join the fast-growing Peterborough, Ontario based farm financial planning company.

"Bernie's extensive experience in agri-banking across southwestern Ontario provides us with another diverse offering for our clients,” says Darrell Wade, founder of Farm Life. “He is known across the industry for his integrity, commitment to his family and faith and will be a valuable addition to our team.”

Based at his home farm near Orangeville, Ontario, Bernie will continue to work with farming clients across southwestern Ontario. With over 20 years’ experience in agriculture banking leadership, team coaching and finance strategy development, he has extensive experience working with families on their farm business growth strategies. He also maintains a dairy, hog and crop farm where he and his wife are already teaching their nine children about the agriculture industry.

"Throughout my two decades of agri-banking experience, I have always enjoyed helping farm families plan the future of their business,” says Kottelenberg. “I am thrilled to join a team where the focus of family and family harmony is the cornerstone of their daily work.”

Farm Life Financial Planning Group was founded in 2015 by Darrell Wade with a mission to ensure Canadian farmers can keep farming. It works with families across Ontario to build continuity of the farm through succession, transition and tax efficient estate plans. In January 2018, Farm Life became a Benefit Partner of the Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA). Farm Life currently has representatives across the province and is headquartered in Peterborough, Ontario.


Media Contact:

Devon Girard



Bernie Kottelenberg, Farm Advisor, CAFA

Bernie grew up as one of seven children on a dairy farm near Orangeville, Ontario. From a young age, he was sitting in on farm meetings and eager to learn about the business management of his parent’s dairy operation. Bernie obtained his agri-business degree from University of Guelph and then worked for 20 years in agriculture banking leadership, team coaching and finance strategy development.

Bernie is well known within the agribusiness and farm community across southwestern Ontario. He enjoys working with farm families to develop growth strategies and help them realize their performance potential. Since 2002, Bernie and his spouse Joanneke have established their own dairy, hog and crop farm in Hillsburgh. In spring of 2018, Bernie joined Farm Life as an advisor where he continues to help farm families realize their farming potential, plan for continuity and maintain family harmony.

Family, faith and integrity are values Bernie shares with his wife and family as they raise their 9 children. Bernie also enjoys being a part-time director of a charitable foundation, serving within a local church community and on the Wellington County dairy producer committee. He is certified through the Canadian Association of Farm Advisors.

Darrell Wade, Founder, Principal Advisor, CAFA, FEA

Darrell Wade grew up on his family farm in Southern Ontario and the sudden loss of his father and his family faced the consequences of the right things not being planned for on his family farm. His father, like so many farmers today, didn’t take the time to plan for the “what ifs” with his professional team and he didn’t communicate his intentions. With the sudden passing of his father at the age of 65 there was no legacy for the family farm business.

Darrell then joined the financial services industry where he now dedicates his time to helping other family-owned farms implement customized succession plans. His mission is to ensure no other family experiences a loss like his family did.

Darrell is the founder of Farm Life Financial Planning Group, which currently helps clients across Ontario find stability on their farm and ensure the farm can live on for future generations to come. His role is to empower farm families to keep farming and ensure there is family harmony when building tax efficient succession plans.

He is certified through the Canadian Association of Farm Advisors and is a certified Family Enterprise Advisor.


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