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Centre County to Host Statewide Farmland Preservation Conference April 4


Jim Baird, O) 202-378-1235, Cell) 240-449-5927, jbaird@farmland.org


Representatives from the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture and American Farmland Trust will kick off a discussion of the economic and environmental challenges and opportunities related to protecting the Commonwealth’s farms during the Pennsylvania Farmland Preservation Association’s (PFPA) spring conference on April 4.

During the evening, Norm Lathbury, former agricultural land preservation coordinator for Centre County and cofounder/former executive director of the Centre County Farmland Trust, will be presented with American Farmland Trust’s (AFT) Pennsylvania Farmland Preservation Local Heroes Award. The award, given in conjunction with PFPA, recognizes outstanding efforts to protect farmland, promote sound farming practices, and keep farmers on the land. Congressman Glenn Thompson, chairman of the House Subcommittee on Conservation, Energy, & Forestry, will be among the speakers honoring Lathbury.

What: Pennsylvania Farmland Preservation Association Conference

When: Thursday, April 4, 1:00-4:30 p.m.

1: 00 p.m. Update on Farmland Protection in Pennsylvania by Deputy Secretary Mike Pechart, American Farmland Trust Mid Atlantic Director Jim Baird and Doug Wolfgang, director of the PA Department of Agriculture’s Bureau of Farmland Protection

2:15 p.m. Roundtable discussion on “21st Century Farmland Preservation: Keeping Our Farms Economically Viable” featuring Marilyn Anthony of Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture; Darlene Livingston, executive Director of Pennsylvania Farm Link; and Gary Anderson, Ag Business Consultant with Ag Choice Farm Credit

8:00 p.m. Keynote Speaker Debra Bowman, executive director of Tourism, Film and Economic Development Marketing for the Pennsylvania Office of Tourism

8:30 p.m. Presentation of the Pennsylvania Farmland Preservation Local Heroes Award

Where: Penn Stater Conference Center, 215 Innovation Boulevard in State College

Additional information: A complete agenda is available at www.pafarmland.org.



American Farmland Trust is the nation's leading conservation organization dedicated to protecting farmland, promoting sound farming practices and keeping farmers on the land. Since its founding in 1980 by a group of farmers and citizens concerned about the rapid loss of farmland to development, AFT has helped save millions of acres of farmland from development and led the way for the adoption of conservation practices on millions more.

AFT's national office is located in Washington, DC. Phone: 202-331-7300. For more information, visit www.farmland.org.

American Farmland Trust