2009 Press Releases
Kathleen Merrigan to speak at All Things Organic™ in June
Greenfield, MASS. (May 4, 2009)—The Organic Trade Association (OTA) today announced that Kathleen Merrigan, USDA’s Deputy Secretary of Agriculture, will give a keynote address at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday, June 17, at the 2009 All Things Organic™ Conference and Trade Show, produced by OTA in partnership with Diversified Business Communications.
Merrigan’s presentation is slated to directly follow the Organic Trade Association’s Annual Meeting and directly precede the opening of the trade show. The time allotted will be 30 minutes. The U.S. Deputy Secretary of Agriculture, who is a long-time advocate of organic agriculture, will speak on directions at USDA that would impact the organic industry in the short and long term.
The upcoming 2009 All Things Organic™ Conference and Trade Show will take place June 16-18 at the Lakeview Center at McCormick Place in Chicago.
Merrigan was the recipient of OTA’s 2000 Organic Leadership Award for helping shape the regulation implementing the Organic Foods Production Act (OFPA) and her efforts in helping draw up OFPA itself.
“As such, she represents a positive force in the organic world. We believe it will be a delight and honor to hear her speak,” said Christine Bushway, OTA’s Executive Director.
Merrigan most recently was an assistant professor and Director of the Agriculture, Food and Environment MS and PhD Program at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University in Boston, MA. Prior to joining the Friedman School, she held a variety of policymaking jobs at the state, federal and international level.
From 1999 to 2001, she was Administrator of the Agricultural Marketing Service of USDA. From 1994 to 1999, she worked at the Wallace Institute for Alternative Agriculture, and served as an expert consultant at the Food Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. From 1987 to 1992, she was a staff member on the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, working for Chairman Patrick Leahy. From 1986 to 1987, Merrigan worked in the regulatory division of the Texas Department of Agriculture and from 1982 to 1985, she worked for Congressman John Olver during his tenure in the Massachusetts State Senate. Merrigan holds a Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in environmental planning and policy, a Master of Public Affairs from the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas, and a B.A. in Political Science and English from Williams College.
For more details about All Things Organic™ or to register to attend, go to www.organicexpo.com.
The Organic Trade Association (OTA) is the membership-based business association for organic agriculture and products in North America. Its 1,600 members include growers, shippers, processors, certifiers, farmers' associations, distributors, importers, exporters, consultants, retailers and others. OTA's mission is to promote and protect the growth of organic trade to benefit the environment, farmers, the public and the economy (www.ota.com).