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NYFB Announces Promotions, New Hires

From Staff Reports

New York Farm Bureau has recently promoted and hired five employees. Renée St. Jacques has been promoted to Senior Associate Director of Public Policy.

Renée had been with NYFB since 2017 and currently lobbies on a wide range of issues at the state capitol in Albany, including food policy, equine and invasive species and cannabis issues.  She is also the staff lead on New York Farm Bureau’s Urban Agriculture work group and the Promotion and Education Committee.

“I couldn’t be more pleased to promote Renée to a new position with greater responsibility for oversight of policy issues for New York Farm Bureau. Renée has been integrally involved with many critical agriculture policy initiatives over the years and the efforts were successful because of her work,” said Jeff Williams, Director of the Division of Public Policy.

Renee Ciardi, County Manager for Region 8, will now be staffing the NYFB Young Farmers & Ranchers Program in addition to her previous management duties. Renee has been with the organization since 2016. Her supervisor John Wagner, Director of Farm Bureau Relations and Development said, “Renee is the right person at the right time for this assignment. Having just completed her LeadNY experience, Renee will be able to bring many of the concepts she has recently learned in leadership development and committee management to the position. Renee has a wealth of contacts from across the state to also lean into to help our program grow, I look forward to the leadership of Renee from a staff perspective as she assists in guiding the work of our state committee.”

Lauren McGrath has recently promoted to Manager of County Farm Bureau Relations and Development for Region 9. Lauren had been with Long Island Farm Bureau since 2020. She will be responsible for Bronx, Kings, Nassau, New York, Oueens, Richmond, and Suffolk Counties.               
“We are excited to add Lauren to our County Relations and Development team,” her supervisor John Wagner said. “Lauren will be serving as a County Manager with responsibilities for the Long Island Farm Bureau and New York City area. With the development of urban agriculture in New York, we are excited about the possibilities of growing our Long Island Farm Bureau membership within the New York City area and Lauren’s connections and knowledge of the city will be invaluable.”

Natally Resnik Batiston has recently been hired as Manager of County Development and Relations for Regions 6, which includes Clinton, Essex, Franklin, Saratoga, St. Lawrence and Washington Counties. Natally is a native of Brazil who has lived here in the North Country for the past five years.

“As a child, I always helped my grandparents’ family with chores on their farm. I worked  with the livestock, cared for coffee beans, harvested sugar cane and other crops. My expertise is in animal science which was developed through my degree at the university in Brazil. The agricultural area that I am most familiar with is the equine industry, hay production, and agritourism. I have also worked with bison, dairy, broilers, beekeeping, exotic meat, and others. My most recent employment was at Miner Institute in the horse barn facility focusing on maintenance, reproduction, and research with Morgan horses,” Natally said.

“I come from a place where all farmers need to work together to build a better community with easy information and broad access to farm produce. I am hoping to bring this trait with me, and bring all the farmers from my area together, helping each other, and bringing farm knowledge to all people in NY State,” she continued.

“As a resident of the area and former employee at Miner Institute, Natally will bring an expertise to issues affecting our North Country farmers. We are excited to also have her knowledge of international agriculture within our staff now, as a native of Brazil, Natally will bring a knowledge base to our members that we have not seen before. Natally’s educational background in animal science will also benefit our producers, as she will be able to be a resource for our livestock members, Wagner said.

A native to the Central New York area, is a newly-hired Manager, County Relations and Development for Broome, Chenango, Cortland, Delaware,  Onondaga, Oswego, Tiogan Tier region. After receiving a degree in Geography from SUNY Cortland, Bailey worked in the education field for more than 10 years. Her work in a public school district fostered her interest in spreading knowledge to others whenever she could, especially when it came to agriculture. Bailey was also the local DeRuyter FFA Co-advisor for four years.

In addition to her work in the school Bailey has been involved with New York Farm Bureau for more than 15 years. During those years she has served on the Madison County Board of directors, been the county Young Farmer and Rancher Chair and also served on the State Young Farmer and Rancher Committee. Bailey has true passion for sharing in the triumphs and tribulations agriculture in New York faces and she is looking forward to taking a more active role in the counties she is serving.

“Agriculture is more important to New Yorkers now than it has ever been,” says Coon. “I hope that I can help my county boards to educate, inform and support our community members. To ensure them that the New York farmer has their best interest at heart and wants nothing more than to provide healthy and nutritious food to them.”

“We are pleased to be adding Bailey as a County Manager to our County Relations & Development team here at New York Farm Bureau. Bailey’s personal experience as a long-time Madison County Farm Bureau board member and member of the New York Farm Bureau State Young Farmer & Rancher Committee give her a knowledge base of the organization that will allow her to hit the ground running full speed in working with our county Farm Bureaus. Couple that with her previous work experience within the education system and her real-world experience in the dairy industry she is going to be a great asset to our members.”