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Calvert County Member Appointed to Maryland Agricultural Commission Advisory Board
Governor Martin O’Malley has appointed five new members to the Maryland Agricultural Commission, an advisory body comprised of representatives from different commodity groups who provide the Agriculture Secretary with information and recommendations on policies and issues facing the agriculture industry. Members serve three-year terms and are eligible to serve two consecutive terms.
“Members of the Commission are among the most knowledgeable and experienced agricultural professionals in Maryland, and they care deeply about the current and future state of this industry,” said Agriculture Secretary Buddy Hance. “I am grateful for their willingness to share their time and expertise on behalf of all Marylanders, and I thank the outgoing members for the time and effort they have put in to help ensure a thriving agriculture industry into the future.”
The Commission meets once a month. The new members are listed below.
- Representing the equine industry: Bill Boniface, general manager of the family-owned Bonita Farm, a 400-acre Thoroughbred horse breeding and training operation in Harford County. He replaces outgoing member Ron Green.
- Representing the poultry industry: Charles Carpenter, director of Hatcheries and Primary Breeders for Perdue Farms in Somerset County. He replaces outgoing member Bill Massey.
- Representing Ag Services (at-large): Jennifer L. Rhodes owns and operates Deerfield Farms LLC, a 110-acre poultry and grain operation in Queen Anne’s County. She is also an Extension Educator. She replaces outgoing member Robert N. Stabler.
- Representing the horticulture industry: Allen Swann is a semi-retired partner of Swann Farms, a wholesale fruit and vegetable operation in Calvert County. He replaces outgoing member Henry Allenberg.
- Representing the Maryland Farm Bureau: Milly B Welsh owns and operates Rover’s Content in Prince George’s County, a 97-acre farm developed and managed for the training and trialing of hunting and field trial dogs. She also owns and operates Graden, a 20-acre horse farm in Anne Arundel County. She replaces outgoing member Charles Fry.
There are currently 30 members of the commission, representing:poultry, dairy, livestock, nursery, horticulture, field crops, vegetable industry, veterinary, Maryland State Grange, Maryland Farm Bureau, at large ag services, agri business, turf, equine, consumers, organic farming, direct farm marketing, viticulture, agriculture education, tobacco, forestry, aquaculture, food processing, biofuels, and agri-tourism as well as the University System of Maryland.
For more information on the commission: http://www.mda.state.md.us/boards_comms/md_ag_commission.php
Expanded Biographies of New Members:
Representing the equine industry: Bill Boniface is general manager of the family-owned Bonita Farm, a 400-acre Thoroughbred horse breeding and training operation in Darlington (Harford County.) He is the former president and the current Director Emeritus of the Horse Breeders Association where he also served 18 years on the Board of Directors.He is currently serving on the Board of Trustees of the Maryland Horse Breeders Foundation. In addition, he is the founding Director of Maryland Million Ltd. and is currently serving on the Board of Director’s Executive Committee. Mr. Boniface is also a licensed Thoroughbred owner and member of the Maryland Racing Commission’s Maryland Bred Fund Advisory Committee. Bonita Farm recently diversified part of their operation by planting 2 acres of merlot grapes. They are also working on becoming a more sustainable operation by producing their own hay.
Representing the poultry industry: Charles Carpenter, director of Hatcheries and Primary Breeders for Perdue Farms in Somerset County. Mr. Carpenter oversees the continuous improvement of Perdue's proprietary breed of chicken and the breeder operations and hatcheries that provide chicks to the farms that raise Perdue chickens. He joined the company as a flock supervisor in 1973 and has held numerous positions on Delmarva, including housing manager, director of broiler production, operations manager, complex manager and vice president of pre-pack broiler operations.A third-generation farmer, Mr. Carpenter grew up on the family tobacco and cattle farm in Berea, Ky. A Maryland resident since 1973, he owns a 186-acre row crop farm near Princess Anne. He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Agriculture from Berea College in Kentucky.Carpenter is past president of the Delmarva Poultry Industry and currently serves on its board of directors and executive committee.
Representing Ag Services (at-large): Jennifer L. Rhodes of Queen Anne’s County owns and operates Deerfield Farms LLC, a 110-acre poultry and grain operation, with her two sons. The operation consists of 480,000 broilers annually and cash grain. She is also an Extension Educator for the University of Maryland Extension in Queen Anne’s County. She holds memberships and leadership positions in the following organizations: Vice President, Board and Executive Committee of the Delmarva Poultry Industry Inc.; Poultry & Egg Committee of the Maryland Farm Bureau; Board of the Queen Anne’s County Farm Bureau; Board of the Foundation for Community Partnerships; Board of the Queen Anne’s County Soil Conservation District; and LEAD Maryland Alumni Committee (graduate of Class IV). Ms. Rhodes also serves on the Executive Committee and as chair of the Human Resources Committee for MidAtlantic Farm Credit.
Representing the horticulture industry: Allen Swann is a semi-retired partner of Swann Farms, a wholesale fruit and vegetable operation in Calvert County. He holds memberships and leadership positions in the following organizations: Member of the USDA Fruit & Vegetable Industry Advisory Committee; Member of the Vansville Farmers; Member of the Calvert County Farm Bureau; Director Prince George’s Federal Savings Bank and Chairman of the Audit Committee; Member of the Maryland Vegetable Growers Association; Calvert County Board of License Commissioner; Director of the Colonial Agriculture Education Foundation; Director of Colonial Farm Credit.Allen was also the past Director for: Calvert Farmland Trust; Maryland Vegetable Growers Association; Maryland Farm Bureau.He has been a member of the Governor’s Environmental Policy Committee.As well as, the past Chairman for: Maryland Wildlife Advisory Commission; Maryland (State) Farm Bureau Membership Committee; Southern Maryland Regional Farmers’ Market; Maryland (State) Farm Bureau Young Farmers; Calvert County Young Farmers.
Representing the Maryland Farm Bureau: Milly B Welsh of Anne Arundel County owns and operates Rover’s Content in Prince George’s County, a 97-acre farm developed and managed for the training and trialing of hunting and field trial dogs. She also owns and operates Graden, a 20-acre horse farm in Anne Arundel County. Currently she is an active horse show judge, being recorded by U.S. Equestrian Federation, Maryland Horse Shows Association, and Welsh Pony and Cob Society. She isvice president of Anne Arundel County Farm Bureau, board and executive committee member of Maryland Farm Bureau, supervisor of Anne Arundel County Soil Conservation District, member of Maryland Agricultural Commission.
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