Jennifer Perkins Joins AFT as Mid-Atlantic Farmland Programs Manager - American Farmland Trust

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Jennifer Perkins Joins AFT as Mid-Atlantic Farmland Programs Manager

(Washington, D.C.) Jennifer Perkins joins American Farmland Trust today as Mid-Atlantic Farmland Programs Manager, where she will develop and lead new holistic projects that seek to catalyze a new wave of innovative agricultural land protection, access, and transfer; promote the widespread adoption of regenerative farm practices and systems on protected land; support farmland transfer and succession to a new generation of farmers; and strengthen farm viability.

Perkins, who has 23 years of experience in farmland preservation, economic development, public policy, and program management, joins AFT from the Office of Farmland Preservation at the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services where she guided conservation policy for the agency, administered the Farmland Preservation Fund, provided technical assistance to localities pursuing conservation strategies, awarded state matching funds to local purchase of development rights programs, enhanced the Virginia Farmlink program, created peer networking groups in focused on conservation and food access, developed and managed the Governor’s Agriculture and Forestry Industries Development Fund Infrastructure grant, and developed the Virginia Food Access Investment Fund. Previously, Perkins worked for the James River Association, University of Virginia, Virginia Outdoors Foundation, and Piedmont Environmental Council.

“I believe truly effective and sustainable farmland preservation requires a holistic approach that takes into account the long-term economic viability of the farms we are protecting, as well as the needs of the families who are their stewards,” said Perkins. “This is why I am so excited for the opportunity to use the wide breadth of my experience in preservation policy and economic development to help implement AFT’s thoughtful and comprehensive approach to preserving and supporting the family-owned farm businesses throughout the Mid-Atlantic.”

“Jen has a deep understanding of agriculture and conservation issues in Virginia,” said AFT Mid-Atlantic Regional Director Jamie Mierau. “She brings a unique understanding and holistic approach to farmland preservation that recognizes the intersection of conservation, environmental justice, and rural economic development. We look forward to Jen bringing her leadership to our growing team and building new partnerships and strengthening efforts across the region.”


American Farmland Trust is the only national organization that takes a holistic approach to agriculture, focusing on the land itself, the agricultural practices used on that land, and the farmers and ranchers who do the work. AFT launched the conservation agriculture movement and continues to raise public awareness through our No Farms, No Food message. Since our founding in 1980, AFT has helped permanently protect over 6.8 million acres of agricultural lands, advanced environmentally-sound farming practices on millions of additional acres and supported thousands of farm families. 


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