Colorado Department of Agriculture Update from Commissioner Greenberg



Wherever you are in the state, I hope you have had the opportunity to interact with one of our CDA employees. We’ve been all over the state this summer, getting ready for harvest, holding community meetings, and talking to ag communities about how we can best support you.

When our Human Resources director Ruth Decrescentis visited CSU-Fort Collins, she met emerging leaders from the MANRRS (Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Related Sciences) chapter. These students are planning relief efforts to aid Hawai’i after the devastating aftermath of the recent wildfire. CDA and MANRRS are working together so that our agency can better support their goals as up-and-coming agricultural leaders.

Last month, our senior staff hosted a listening forum in Grand Junction. Over 40 community members heard from Deputy Commissioner of Operations Hollis Glenn and our Regional Assistant Commissioners Jo Stanko and George Whitten. Plants Industry division director Wondirad Gebru discussed our partnership with CSU Extension and Mesa County to prevent the spread of Japanese Beetle. Conservation Services division director Les Owen and deputy division director Cindy Lair discussed our STAR+ soil health and Palisade Insectary programs, and staff joined us from the region to make local connections.

Speaking of soil, the conservation team hosted the landmark Rocky Mountain Soil Health Roundtable. This convening brought together CDA’s partners from six other western states who will be building STAR+ or similar incentive-based soil health programs as part of CDA’s $25 million Partnerships for Climate Smart Commodities grant through USDA.

Our Agricultural Worker Services Program manager, Aldo Parra, hosted a three hour community meeting for producers and ag workers both in English and Spanish in Olathe. More of these events to come.

My own travels have included time in Grand Junction for the Colorado River Drought Taskforce and USDA’s trade mission to Chile, where I joined 14 U.S. companies and agriculture officials from North Dakota, Missouri, and Nebraska. Colorado’s leadership in building climate resilience has been a great asset toward advancing trade and business relationships at home and abroad.

And this week, several CDA staff members enjoyed Colorado Proud’s School Meal Day, which helps connect kids to where their food comes from.

As we continue into fall, CDA staff will continue showing up in ag communities across the state. Be on the lookout for current and upcoming grant opportunities, job postings, and events.

I hope you will continue to stay connected to CDA as we grow our work together.

Commissioner Kate Greenberg

Filed Under: Letters to the Editor

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