Our Staff


Jeff MoyerJeff Moyer, Executive Director
Jeff Moyer is a world renowned authority in organic agriculture. His expertise includes organic crop production systems with a focus on weed management, cover crops, crop rotations, equipment modification and use, and facilities design. Jeff is perhaps most well-known for conceptualizing and popularizing the No Till Roller Crimper for use in organic agriculture. In 2011, he wrote Organic No-Till Farming, a publication that has become a resource for farmers throughout the world.

Jeff brings a farmer’s perspective and approach to issues in organic agriculture. He is a past chair of the National Organic Standards Board, a founding board member of Pennsylvania Certified Organic, the Chairman of the Board of Director of The Seed Farm, part of the Green America Non-GMO Working Group, a Project Member of The Noble Foundation’s Soil Renaissance project, and a Board Member of PA Farm Link.

In September 2015, Jeff was appointed as Executive Director of Rodale Institute after spending the last four decades at the Institute, helping countless farmers make the transition from conventional, chemical-based farming to organic methods.


Research

Kristine Nichols Dr. Kristine Nichols, Chief Scientist
Dr. Kristine Nichols examines the impacts of management such as crop rotation, tillage practices, organic production, cover crops, and livestock grazing on soil aggregation, water relationships, and glomalin at the Institute. She received a Bachelor of Science in Plant Biology and in Genetics and Cell Biology from the University of Minnesota, a Masters in Environmental Microbiology from West Virginia University, and a Ph.D. in Soil Science from the University of Maryland. Dr. Nichols has worked as a Soil Microbiologist with the USDA for over 14 years, the first three in Beltsville, MD and then at Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Northern Great Plains Research Laboratory (NGPRL) in Mandan, ND for the next 11 years.
Dr. Gladis Zinati, Associate Research Scientist
Dr. Gladis Zinati conducts basic and applied research in compost formulations, carbon sequestration, soil fertility and pest management to improve organic crop production and quality. She has undergraduate degrees in General Agriculture and Agriculture Engineering, MSc. degree in Horticulture from the American University of Beirut, and Ph.D. in Soil Fertility from Michigan State University. She formerly worked as an Extension Specialist in Nursery Crops for Rutgers University in NJ.
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Emmanuel Omondi Dr. Emmanuel Omondi, Research Director for Farming Systems Trial
Dr. Emmanuel Omondi manages all research activities of the Farming Systems Trial, comparing organic and conventional grain cropping systems. He also evaluates residue management, cover crop options, crop spacing, and weed tolerance and density dynamics combined with reduced tillage practices that can help in managing weeds, enhancing soil quality, improving yields, and encourage adoption of organic farming. Dr. Omondi grew up on a farm in Kenya and has been involved in sustainable agriculture work since 1992. He has 15 years’ experience as Executive Director for a sustainable agriculture Associate Degree equivalent training institution in Kenya, as well as four years as Research Associate and Project Manager for a USAID funded, University of Wyoming-led, conservation agriculture research project in East Africa. He holds a BS degree in General Agriculture from the University of Nairobi, Kenya, and MS and Ph.D. degrees in Agronomy from the University of Wyoming.
Dr. Andrew Smith, Research Director for Vegetable Systems Trial
Dr. Andrew Smith oversees the project, measuring soil quality, economic profit, insect damage and weed tolerance, and nutritional quality - quantity of nutrients and other components - in organic and conventional vegetables. He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Agronomy and Crop Science from Cornell University, Master’s Degree in Entomology from University of Maryland, and recently, Ph.D in Molecular Ecology from Drexel University. Dr. Smith has also studied Integrated Pest Management in Guatemala with the Peace Corp as well as managed a fruit and vegetable farm for 9-10 years.
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Marisa Wagner Marisa Wagner, Research Technician
Marisa Wagner works as a project manager of a nutrient analysis project, which analyzes how different farming practices affect the nutrition of produce and grain crops. Marisa has a Bachelor’s in Environmental Science from Saint Joseph’s University and has a Master's of Nutrition Science at Drexel University. Marisa is currently working to receive her Registered Dietitian license with Priority Nutrition Care.
Kate Harms, Research Technician
Kate works as a project manager and principal investigator for a research study investigating bat activity in agricultural landscapes to develop organic pest management. She also manages agroforestry projects at the institute and is an instructor in the institute’s farmer training program, workshops, and classes. She currently serves as the chair, a position she has held for nine years, of the Longswamp Township Environmental Advisory Council.  Kate received her Masters in Biology from East Stroudsburg University, then worked in soil and water resource conservation as Resource Conservationist at the Lehigh County Conservation District. Other past experience includes over 15 years in environmental education and work in the veterinarian field. When she’s not at the institute she is also the Creatures Division Manager for the Ian Somerhalder Foundation, working on animal welfare and wildlife conservation programs.
Rick Carr Rick Carr, Compost Production Specialist
Rick Carr earned a Master of Science degree in Plant Pathology from Cornell University in 2012. Rick conducted research on understanding the mechanisms associated with vermicompost-mediated disease suppression and his work has contributed to the understanding of biologically-based disease suppression as well as a better understanding of Pythium aphanidermatum development and pathogenicity. When Rick was not in the lab, he was often doing outreach and education with Master Composters and Gardeners of New York State. Shortly after graduating from Cornell, Rick left the United States for a research opportunity on a large certified organic farm in Argentina. While in Argentina, Rick developed a new perspective on how laboratory studies translate to on-farm research and application. Rick has joined the research staff at Rodale Institute as their Compost Production Specialist and is currently working on a novel seed treatment for suppressing soil-borne plant pathogens, new technologies for urban agriculture, and a large-scale composting project.
Tara Caton, Research Technician
Tara assists with current research projects, such as shade avoidance, FST, VST, and compost extract. Tara received her Bachelor of Science in Organismal Biology and Ecology at Kutztown University where she studied seed dispersal mode selection on seed size variation. After her Bachelor’s, Tara received a Master of Science in Biology with a concentration in Botany from Bucknell University, where she studied hybridization of Australian spiny Solanum as a means to clarify vague species boundaries. Her love of plants extends outside of Rodale Institute as a Planting Science mentor with the Botanical Society of America where she assists grades 4-8 with botany related science projects through a web platform.

Farm Operations 

Ross Duffield Ross Duffield, Farm Manager
Ross came to the Rodale Institute in 2013 with more than twenty years of farming experience. He grew up on a dairy farm in North East Pennsylvania where, at an early age, he learned the value and importance of animal care and pasture management. After attending Kutztown University and working as a school teacher for several years, Ross realized his true passion lay in organic agriculture. This path led back to farming and, eventually, to the Rodale Institute where he serves as Farm Manager.At Rodale Institute, Ross is responsible for field maintenance including planting and seeding, maintaining the farm equipment necessary to work the fields, and expanding the livestock operations, particularly the vertical integration of the poultry and hog operations into crop rotations. In this unique position, he utilizes his teaching background and skills in sharing his farming expertise with aspiring and transitioning farmers.Within the last year, Ross has overseen the construction and operation of the Rodale institute hog facility. This facility offers hogs the opportunity to forage on organic pasture crops when they choose, as well as provide a shelter that is efficient and clean. Free access to pasture and a deep straw bedding pack provide a healthy place for a variety of hogs whether they are farrowing or finishing. Animal comfort is a direct result of the operation and a reduction of labor allows for the farmer to spend less time cleaning and more time profiting from raising these wonderful animals.
Don Jantzi, Field Operations Foreman
Don manages Rodale Institute's apple orchards, which are home to 20 varieties of scab resistant apples. Don has been working in the orchards since his interest in growing organic apples originated.
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Shelby Dukes, Animal Husbandry Coordinator
Shelby cares for the farm's animals; feeding, watering, medical, maintain pastures and manage rotational grazing of livestock. Shelby was raised on a crop and poultry farm in southern Delaware. She attended the University of Delaware and attained a Bachelor’s of Science in Animal and Food Sciences. While at UD, Shelby worked on the University Dairy Farm as well as the University’s Beef and Sheep Farm. She has also worked as an Assistant Farm Manager at a dairy sheep farm producing cheese.

Maggie Saska, Plant Production Specialist

 

Dan KemperDaniel Kemper, Strategic Support Team Member

 

 

 

Cynthia James, ASC Program Manager
Cynthia manages all aspects of the Agriculture Supported Communities program at the Rodale Institute including production, marketing and farmer education and training.
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Michael Schmaeling Michael Schmaeling, Resident Beekeeper | Facilities Team Member
Michael manages and maintains our honeybee conservancy, building beehives and planting pollinator habitats. As a facilities team member, Mike builds necessary equipment, greenhouses/hoop houses, assisting and supporting facilities.
Lynn Trizna, Rodale Institute St. Luke’s Organic Farm Project Manager
Lynn began farming in 2007, when she spent the summer working on her first farm. She received a Bachelor’s Degree in Urban Studies from the University of Pittsburgh, but decided to follow a more rural path.
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Mark Fabian, Grounds Keeper/Mechanic


Development & Communications

Annie Brown Annie Brown, Director of Development
Annie has been with the Rodale Institute since the fall of 2012, acting first as our West Coast Representative and then assuming the position of Director of Development in January 2016. She is responsible for raising money from foundations, corporations and individuals to allow the Institute to continue our important work. Although her grandmother and mother were both Master Gardeners, Annie boasts a pitch black thumb when it comes to gardening. Her ideal day would be spent hiking far, far away from any garden that needed tending, and instead going to her local farmers' market and buying organic veggies to create a delicious meal.
Hallie Guiseppe, Development Associate
Hallie administers the daily development operations and donor relations. She loves spending her lunch walking the farm, visiting the animals and enjoying the serenity that comes from healthy land, growing healthy food.
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Diana Martin, Director of Communications
Diana manages the marketing and communications of Rodale Institute, overseeing aspects such as our website, social media, email marketing, advertising, public relations, and publications including New Farm. Diana’s team is diverse and works with events, weddings, workshops, tours, the store, and programs such as veterans and Organic Allentown. Diana is a graduate of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and bleeds Orange.
Heather Gurk, Rodale Institute Garden Store Manager
Heather manages the Rodale Institute Garden Store, located in the farm’s historic one-room schoolhouse, and Rodale Institute’s Book Club, which aims to unite environmentally conscious people from the local community and beyond. She also assists with in-house copy-editing needs. Formerly the editor of a nutrition publication for registered dietitians, Heather enjoys learning about the benefits of living sustainably and organically and communicating healthful messages to the farm’s visitors.
Heather Gurk
Jesse Barrett Jesse Barrett, Organic Allentown Program Manager
Jesse manages all aspects of the Organic Allentown Program by training residents how to grow organic food in the City, developing nutrition and cooking classes, organic agriculture education programming, and creating points of sale by establishing organic farmers’ markets and relationships with local corners stores. His work includes the marketing and promotion of Organic Allentown initiatives, developing community participation in programming, managing the operation of the organic farmers’ market, and facilitating relationships between various civic, nonprofit, and private organizations.
Maria Pop, Education & Outreach Manager
Maria plans and implements educational programs for diverse, multicultural audiences as well as in the development and management of online educational tools for farmers. Her educational background includes a Horticultural Engineering degree, a M.Ed. in Adult Education and a postgraduate Certification in Distance Education from Penn State University.
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Jadea Jade Cortez, Communications Specialist
Jade coordinates and manages Rodale Institute's website, social media, email marketing, and assists with the Institute's publications and events. Jade has a Bachelor's degree in Marketing and Certificates in Advertising and Online Marketing, as well as over two years of experience in the Communications field. In her spare time, Jade enjoys sorting through the organic products at Rodale Institute’s Garden Store.
Ali Lynn, Wedding & Events Specialist
Ali works in communications as the Wedding & Events Specialist. She leads planning and coordination of major events including logistics and all event details. She also coordinates the volunteers on the farm. She graduated from Penn State University with a degree in Corporate Communications and a minor in Business. Her favorite part of the work-day is saying “hello” to the farm animals.
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Lyndsey Antanitis, Veteran Farmer Program Coordinator
Lyndsey oversees interns, curriculum and all resources involved in the Delaware Valley University Organic Farming Certificate Program and the Veteran Farming Intern Program. A recent graduate from both, she is able to channel her knowledge into her passion, which is educating and providing opportunities for others within organic agriculture. Lyndsey served as a Staff Sergeant in the Unites States Air Force where she worked as a Cardiopulmonary Laboratory Technician for five years. Through three deployments, being selected for a Critical Care Air Transport Team, acquiring a B.S. in Health Sciences and training doctors, nurses and medical technicians, her love for helping others has only grown.

Finance & Human Resources

Elaine Macbeth, Director of Finance and Human Resources
Elaine manages the Institute’s budget, all aspects of the organization’s finances, internal controls and human resources for the organization. She has more than 17 years of experience in finance and significant expertise in nonprofit accounting. Elaine has professional experience in auditing, federal and non-federal grants administration, budgeting, financial management, federal regulations and human resources.

Linda Carlson-Lockwood, Accountant/Human Resources Assistant

Stacy Glackin, Grants Manager
Stacy manages federal and non-federal grant expenses and budgets and monitors completion of grant deliverables and reporting requirements. She also prepares and submits grant proposals and budgets in collaboration with other departments. Stacy holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting from Millersville University and has been working in the nonprofit industry for the past 15 years.

Facilities

Kim Schroeder Kim Schroeder, Director of Facilities
Kim manages the repairs, improvements and grounds-keeping at the Institute. She also administratively supports our Executive Director, Farm Manager and Finance & Human Resources department, ensuring behind-the-scenes mechanics are running smoothly. Kim started as a temporary receptionist, multi-tasking her way into a permanent, full-time position. She instantly fell in love with the farm, and continues to feel she is doing her part in making the world a better and healthier place to live by forwarding the mission of the Institute.

Jay Belanger, IT Administrator

Louise DeVall, Programs Support Assistant | Travel Coordinator
Louise has been with the Institute since August 1999, starting as Assistant Store Manager and eventually spending eight years as Store Manager. In September 2011, she became the Programs Support Assistant and Travel Coordinator for the research and farm operations departments. Louise arranges all travel and speaking engagements for Institute staff, places orders for departments, handles the organic certification paperwork for the Institute, packs and ships orders for the store, and completes general office duties like answering phones, sorting mail, and scheduling meetings.
Louise DeVall

Matthew RuppertMatthew Ruppert, Facilities Team Member