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Mitch Hunter, PhD

Research Director

Mitch leads AFT’s scientifically rigorous collaborative research program, including its “Farms Under Threat” initiative. He returned to AFT in 2019 after previously serving as federal policy manager and helping advance farmland conservation in the 2014 Farm Bill. In the meantime, Mitch was a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow at Penn State University. He earned a doctorate in agronomy from Penn State University, where his thesis focused on sustainable intensification and climate resilience, particularly using cover crops to improve soils and help crops survive drought. He then served as a post-doctoral research fellow in the Department of Agronomy and Plant Genetics at the University of Minnesota, working to develop management strategies for the novel perennial grain Kernza(R). Mitch enjoys gardening, exploring the wilderness, and helping out on his parents’ grass-fed beef farm in Minnesota.

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