Fall Forum on Land Tenure and the Next Generation of Agriculture

Presented by USDA in partnership with the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell University

Monday, October 3, 2016, 9:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
PepsiCo Auditorium, Stocking Hall
Cornell University

Agriculture is rapidly evolving, and USDA is constantly striving to meet the shifting demands of producers, consumers, businesses, families, and everyone in between.

Over the past seven years, USDA has engaged its resources to support a strong next generation of farmers and ranchers by improving access to land and capital; building new markets and market opportunities; extending new conservation opportunities; offering appropriate risk management tools; and increasing our outreach, education, and technical support.

We see great opportunity on the horizon, but also recognize the need to highlight creative solutions to the major challenges that USDA will face in the years to come.

During this free event, we will focus on Land Tenure and the Next Generation of Agriculture. The forum will include guests and featured speakers from diverse backgrounds: farmers and ranchers, academia, government, farm organizations, local stakeholder groups, agribusiness, and students

The program will begin with digitally moderated and interactive discussions, and end with a networking session. Lunch and light refreshments provided by Cornell University.

Featuring Ann Mills, Deputy Under Secretary for Natural Resources and Environment.


9:30 am
Dean Kathryn J. Boor, Ronald P. Lynch Dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Cornell University

9:40 am

Keynote Address
Ann Mills, Deputy Under Secretary for Natural Resources and Environment

10:00 am
Panel I: Challenges and Opportunities Facing New and Beginning Farmers
Moderated by Richard Ball, Commissioner of Agriculture
Erin Bullock, Wild Hill Farm
Amy Cimino, Wegmans
Tom Cosgrove, Farm Credit East
Dr. Anu Rangarajan, Cornell University
Mario Miranda Sazo, CCE Lake Ontario Fruit Program
Stuart Ziehm, Tiashoke Farms

11:40 am

12:00 pm
Lunch Break
Food provided by Cornell University
Lunch included for those who RSVP’d by the 9/25/16 deadline. All others may purchase lunch at the Dairy Bar down the hall.

1:15 pm

1:30 pm
Panel II: The Issues of Land Access and Land Transition
Moderated by Chris Beyerhelm, USDA Land Tenure Lead
Rogelio Bautista, Farmer
Julia Freedgood, American Farmland Trust
Jared Grissinger, PA Department of Agriculture
Kathy Ruhf, Land for Good
Elwyn Voss, The Voss Group
Chris Wayne, Grow NYC

3:00 pm
USDA Rural Development

3:10 pm
Afternoon Break
Snacks provided by Cornell University

3:20 pm
Feedback Opportunity and Discussion
Moderated by Lilia McFarland, USDA New Farmer Coordinator

4:30 pm
John Noble, Synergy LLC, Noblehurst Farms

Closing Remarks
Julie Suarez, Associate Dean of Governmental and Community Relations in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Cornell University


If the above form is not working correctly, please register for the forum here.

Parking and Transportation

If you are driving a personal vehicle, we suggest that you arrive early to Cornell University's campus to ensure you find the best available parking. There are two parking lots near Stocking Hall: Peterson Lot and B Lot. Peterson Lot is a metered lot that uses Parkmobile. If you are parking in B Lot, be sure to stop by any information booth first to purchase a pass. The map for both of these lots can be found here. View more information about parking on campus.

If you are taking public transportation, many TCAT bus lines stop at Stocking Hall.


If you are planning on staying overnight, Ithaca offers many choices. We recommend our renowned Statler Hotel, or you can explore other accommodations.

Tour Options

Cornell University is pleased to offer two tour options for attendees of the main event. These tours of our innovative CALS facilities will take place the day before, on SUNDAY, OCTOBER 2.

Please RSVP for these tours when you register for the main event by checking the appropriate boxes during "checkout."

Tours will last between 30-60 minutes.

  • Tour 1 at 3:00 p.m. Cornell Dairy Processing Plant. This tour will begin on the second-floor observation deck in Stocking Hall at 411 Tower Road, Ithaca NY 14853. Get a bird's eye view of our state-of-the-art processing facilities, where our Dairy Bar's ice cream is made!
  • Tour 2 at 4:00 p.m. Guterman Greenhouses. This tour will begin in the Guterman Research Center, located at 2 Caldwell Dr. Ithaca NY 14850. See the groundbreaking research our faculty is working on this semester and hear from the student managers of Dilmun Hill Student Farm.

Be sure to review your transportation and parking options for that day!

Contact Information

Feel free to contact the CALS Marketing and Communications Office with any questions. You can reach the communications coordinator, Melanie Cordova, at (607) 255-7651 or

If you need accommodations to participate in this event, please contact Melanie Cordova as soon as possible.