New members bring diverse perspectives to the Colorado Agricultural Commission
The Colorado Department of Agriculture welcomed four new appointees to the Colorado Agricultural Commission, to fill vacancies left behind by members whose terms have expired.
The Agricultural Commission’s nine members are appointed by the governor and confirmed by the state senate. They are responsible for making recommendations to the commissioner, the governor and the general assembly regarding agricultural issues within the state and enforcing rules and regulations related to agriculture. The commission is required by statute to have a balance of political and geographical representation.
“The four new members will bring fresh perspectives to the Agricultural Commission and new ideas to inform the goals and priorities of the Department of Agriculture. I’m pleased to bring new voices to our table, especially those of such varied backgrounds and experiences,” said Commissioner of Agriculture Kate Greenberg. “From the Four Corners, through the Front Range, to Yuma County and Watkins, the four new members live and work in different parts of Colorado but are brought together by their dedication to advancing Colorado agriculture as a whole. I am looking forward to their contributions.”
The new appointees to the Agricultural Commission are:
Nick Trainor (U), Dist. 2 At-Large, 1st term/Expires 2025. Trainor is a fifth-generation cattle rancher born and raised in southeastern Colorado, who graduated from Colorado State University with a degree in animal science and ag business. Trainor has worked as a range management specialist with the Natural Resources Conservation Service. He now owns and manages Trainor Cattle Company, located east of Denver. Trainor is a practitioner of holistic planned grazing, is a member of the Ranching for Profit Executive Link alumni program, and serves on the West Arapahoe Conservation District Board, and Producer Advisory Council for the Colorado Collaborative for Healthy Soils.
David Blach (D), Dist. 2, 1st term/Expires 2025. Blach and wife Karla manage and operate a farm and ranch in Yuma, Colo., which was homesteaded in 1887. Crop production includes corn, wheat, sugar beets, alfalfa, and millet and the livestock production is a cow-calf and feeder operation. The farm is a dryland and irrigated enterprise that uses rotational grazing range management and many conservation techniques in their farming and ranching operations, including soil conservation practices. He is a member of multiple commodity associations and has previously served on the Colorado Department of Agriculture Noxious Weed Advisory Board.
Simon Martinez (R); Dist. 4 At-Large, 1st term/Expires 2025. Simon Martinez is the general manager of the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe Farm and Ranch Enterprise, a farm which consists of 110 center pivot sprinklers, which irrigate 7,700 acres of farmland. They grow and harvest alfalfa hay, non-GMO corn products and range feed for a 650 cow/calf operation. Martinez also serves as the general manager for Bow & Arrow Brand, LLC, which mills and packages products that are non-GMO project verified, gluten free, and kosher certified, and serves as the vice president of the Dolores Water Conservancy District.
Roberto Meza (D); Dist. 1, 1st term/Expires 2025; Roberto Meza is a first-generation farmer, artist, and local food advocate born in Mexico City. He started farming in 2012 and is inspired by the resilience of communities, farmers, and food systems workers, who persevere despite moments of adversity and hardship. Meza is the co-founder of Emerald Gardens, a year-round greenhouse farm in Bennett and CEO of East Denver Food Hub, a local food supplier based in Denver. He is a member of the Denver Sustainable Food Policy Council, vice-president of the board of the National Young Farmers Coalition, and is on the leadership team for Mile High Farmers.
Agriculture Commission members whose terms are ending this January are Steve Young, Brett Rutledge, Marty Gerace, and Michael Hirakata.
“I also want to thank the four excellent outgoing Ag Commission members, who have devoted countless hours to serving the State of Colorado and Colorado agriculture during their respective terms,” said Commissioner Greenberg. “I’m grateful for their counsel and dedication to our state’s agricultural communities.”
The new Ag Commission appointees still need to be confirmed by the Colorado State Senate.
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