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NYS Commissioner of Agriculture Richard Ball to Speak

December 14, 2015

LIBERTY — The public is invited to attend the 101st Annual Meeting of Cornell Cooperative Extension Sullivan County (CCE) this Thursday, December 17, 2015 at 7:00 p.m. in the Gerald J. Skoda Extension Education Center on 64 Ferndale-Loomis Road in Liberty.

The keynote speaker is Richard Ball, Commissioner of NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets.  He will address the state of agriculture in New York and discuss the balance of diverse agriculture interests that exist in Sullivan County.

A native New Yorker, Ball has made a living in agriculture his entire life.  His inspiration came from his grandparents who were dairy farmers.  He began as a farm worker at a vegetable farm in Rhode Island and later became operations manager of that same farm.  After 20 years, Ball moved back to the Empire State with an opportunity to become a farm owner. 

For the past 20 years, he has been the owner and operator of the 200 acre Schoharie Valley Farms, which produces a wide range of vegetable crops, small fruits and greenhouse crops.  The farm serves both retail and wholesale consumers through an onsite farm market known as “The Carrot Barn” and ships to brokers and restaurants in the local area as well as New York City.

At the annual meeting, the CCE board and staff will honor outstanding supporters with “Friends of Extension” awards that recognize their accomplishments and dedication to the mission and to the past year’s outreach efforts.  Voting for board of directors and program advisory committee vacancies and expired terms is also on the agenda.  A list of the candidates can be found on the CCE website at

Light refreshments highlighting local foods promotion will be provided immediately following the meeting, made possible in part with funding from the US Department of Agriculture.  The Farm Fresh Barn Quilt drawing will occur at the closing of the meeting.

CCESC’s Annual Meeting is open to the public and there is no cost to attend.  Pre-registration is requested.  For more information call 845-292-6180 or email