This one-day conference will focus on the tools and strategies necessary to make grazing on your farm resilient and profitable now and for generations to come.
Lectures & panel discussions with outstanding leaders.
Speakers have been hand-selected based on their knowledge and experience.
Vendor trade show.
Leading vendors in the industry are invited to showcase their business at our Trade Show. Learn how to become an exhibitor.
Our speakers and panelists of industry leaders and expert farms include:
Keynote Speaker: Kit Pharo
Kit Pharo is a very opinionated rancher on the central high plains of Eastern Colorado. While most cow-calf producers spent the last 30+ years trying to increase individual weaning weights, Kit implemented management practices that reduced and eliminated expenses while increasing pounds per acre – instead of per cow. Kit has proven that increasing pounds per acre is much more profitable than increasing pounds per cow. Pharo Cattle Company sells over 1,000 low-input, grass-developed bulls every year. They send quarterly newsletters and weekly emails to over 20,000 people.
Speakers and Panelists:
Joseph Amsili, Extension Associate, Soil Health Program and Graduate Student (Van Es Lab), School of Integrative Plant Science Soil and Crop Sciences Section
Joseph joined the Cornell Soil Health Team in September 2018 to coordinate extension and research activities related to the Cornell Soil Health and Adaptive Nitrogen Management Programs. Joseph previously worked as a laboratory technician in the Cornell Soil Health Lab between 2013-2016. During that time, he gained extensive experience in soil health testing. While at Penn State, where he earned his M.S. in 2018, Joseph was part of a research group studying the multiple benefits of cover crop monocultures and mixtures for farmers. His M.S. research focused on comparing cover crop root traits and on tracing over crop rhizodeposition (the organic carbon released from living plant roots) into stable fractions of the soil. Joseph’s excitement for soil health is rooted in his passion for promoting sustainable management strategies.
Katherine Carestio of Backbone Farm
Backbone Farm raises 100% grass-fed and pasture-finished beef in Hector, NY. We rotationally graze our herd of 60 black Angus cows on 105 acres of perennial pastures from birth to butcher. The animals and pastures are organically managed.”
Dan Smith of the Agritech Institute for Small Farms
Dan is a lawyer with concentration in state and federal milk market regulation, and has served as special counsel for dairy regulatory and development efforts in a number of states across the country. He was founding Executive Director of the Northeast Dairy Compact Commission, former Legislative Counsel for the Vermont Legislature (House and Senate Agriculture Committees), law clerk for Honorable Fredric W. Allen, Chief Justice, Vermont Supreme Court, and has served on a number of local boards and commissions. He is also trained as a rough frame carpenter. He currently resides on a hill farm in central Vermont with family, beef cows, chickens, and occasionally pigs.
Savanna Shelnut Ag Climate Resiliency Specialist, Cornell Cooperative Extension
Savanna Shelnutt is an Ag Climate Resiliency Specialist with Cornell Cooperative Extension’s Harvest New York Team. She works with producers and fellow extension personnel to combat and adapt to climate change in the Hudson Valley. She is based in Hudson, New York and serves the ten counties between Albany and New York City.
Prior to joining Cornell Cooperative Extension, Savanna worked with hemp producers in New York State to determine best production practices and create production budgets. She has also participated in research related to the soil microbiome’s role in greenhouse gas exchange. Savanna is originally from North Texas and received her B.S. in Plant and Environmental Soil Sciences from Texas A&M University and her M.S. in Horticulture from Cornell University.
Jenn Colby from Vermont Howling Wolf Farmstay
Jenn Colby has spent over 25 years helping livestock farmers find success and quality of life through non-profit, academic, Extension, and community roles. She writes, farms, consults, and hosts the Choosing to Farm podcast from her home base of Howling Wolf Farm in Vermont.
Megan Burley from Burley’s berries and blooms
Megan Burley, is the owner of Burley Berries and Blooms (a small fruit and flower farm) in Warsaw, NY. Growing up on a fruit and vegetable farm in western PA she has a passion for agriculture. While also living and helping on her husband’s 700 cow grazing dairy farm (East Hill Farms) she works as the 4-H educator for Cornell Cooperative Extension in Erie County. Past work experiences include the Ag Teacher at Perry Central School District as well as a Farm Business Management Educator for CCE Erie. The Eat Local Movement has provided Megan with a platform to educate consumers about where their food comes from. Burley Berries is planning an expansion to include a Micro-Creamery to add to their farm product offerings selling cream-line milk.
Erik has 15 years of experience conducting agricultural research and educational outreach as a graduate student and extension professional. As a Finger Lakes native with grain and forage crop experience gained on his family’s farm, he brings his knowledge to New York’s agricultural community. Erik earned his BA from SUNY Oswego in Biology and his MS and PhD from Cornell University in Entomology.
Ken Wise Senior Extension Associate, NYS Integrated Pest Management | Cornell University
Ken provides leadership in applied research and innovative educational programs in integrated pest management for organic and conventional dairy, livestock and field crops producers in New York State.
John Burns Representative from the USDA Climate Hub
John and his family operate Evermore Farms in Lindley, NY using mob grazing, silvopasturing, biochar and every other seemingly good idea ever considered in the grazing world (and probably a few that haven’t) to make their farm, flerd and full-time family grazing business be all that it can be.
Juliana Quaresma of Viva Acres
I am Juliana (she/her), latinex, from Northeastern Brazil. I am passionate about connecting people with farming and the environment. Since 2009 I have developed and implemented educational programs around agroecology and agroforestry. In 2021 I started my farming journey, and I am thrilled to begin a closer relationship to the land, sheep farming and herbalism. I have an Interdisciplinary Masters in Environmental Science and Studies, and I currently work with Groundswell Center as the Executive Director.
Allison Morrill Chatrchyan
Dr. Allison Morrill Chatrchyan School of Integrative Plant Sciences, Soil & Crop Sciences Section | Cornell University
Dr. Allison Morrill Chatrchyan is a Research Associate in the School of Integrative Plant Sciences, Soil & Crop Sciences Section, at Cornell University and an Adjunct Professor of Law at the Cornell Law School. As a social scientist, her work focuses on the interactions between social, legal, environmental, and agricultural systems. Dr. Chatrchyan facilitates interdisciplinary research and extension teams and develops resources, tools, and training programs on climate change science, impacts, adaptation, mitigation, and synergies.
Dr. Chatrchyan’s research is focused on assessing climate change impacts and adaptation gaps; stakeholder views and actions on climate change; and polycentric climate change governance (including laws, policies, institutions, and non-state actions at multiple levels). She co-developed and leads the Cornell Climate Smart Farming Program and Cornell Climate Stewards Program and has collaborated on several projects with the USDA NE Climate Hub since 2017. Dr. Chatrchyan has led the Cornell Delegations to the annual Conference of Parties (COP) of the UNFCCC since COP21 in Paris and has served on the Party Delegation of the Republic of Armenia since COP23. She was appointed by Governor Hochul to co-chair the Agriculture Chapter of the New York State Climate Impacts Assessment and serves on the UNFCCC Nairobi Work Program Expert Group in Agriculture and Food Security. Dr. Chatrchyan teaches Environmental Law and Policy and International Environmental Law for the Cornell Law School.
Kitty O’Neil, PhD, CCA Ag Climate Resiliency Specialist, Extension Associate at Cornell Cooperative Extension
Dr. Kitty O’Neil works to improve the yield and production efficiency of field crops and forages – a goal that requires smart crop management and a keen understanding of climate-related risks and long-term soil health. A field crops and soils specialist, she leads the North New York field crops team, which designs crop and soil management programs to serve the region’s farms. Kitty’s research has included cropping systems and the effects of soil amendments and cover crops on soil health on potato farms. She earned a B.S. in animal science from Cornell University, an M.S. in animal nutrition and plant biochemistry, and a Ph.D. in sustainable plant and soil cropping systems, both from Michigan State University.
Our agenda is packed to keep attendees engaged and entertained. Get the full schedule here.
|7:30 – 9a.m.
|Registration and Tradeshow
|9 – 9:15a.m.
|9:15 – 10:15a.m.
|Ranching made profitable, enjoyable, and sustainable part 1
|10:15 – 10:30a.m.
|10:30 – 11:30a.m.
|Ranching made profitable, enjoyable, and sustainable part 2
|11:30a.m. – 12:30p.m.
|Lunch and Tradeshow
|12:30 – 1:30p.m.
|Managing for soil health and climate resiliency in pasture systems
Joseph Amsili and Katherine Carestio of Backbone Farm
|1:45 – 2:30p.m.
|Breakout Sessions 1
|2:30 – 2:45p.m.
|2:45 – 3:30p.m.
|Breakout Sessions 2
|3:30 – 4:30p.m.
|Looking forward – weather resiliency- USDA Climate Hub
Dr. Allison Morrill Chatrchyan