Board of Directors 2017-12-18T15:42:16+00:00

Rockland Farm Alliance Staff

Pearl Wetherall, Cropsey Community Farm Manager

Pearl began her work as the Farm Manager of the Cropsey Community Farm in December of 2016. Previously, she managed New Morning Farm, a 40 acre organic vegetable farm in south-central Pennsylvania. She holds a BA in Environmental Studies from Green Mountain College in Vermont, with a focus in in Sustainable Agriculture as well as Fine Arts and the Environment. She is passionate about working for an equitable and accessible food system, while implementing and experimenting with the most cutting edge ecologically responsible farming practices. Her hobbies include cooking, kitchen dance parties, and hiking with her doggie, Buckwheat.

Sarah Bartges, Education Director

Sarah Bartges is a science and math educator who joined the RFA team as Education Director in January 2017.  After graduating from Barnard College with a BA in Environmental Policy, Sarah happily, but accidentally, found her life’s passion for teaching and gardening at Columbia Secondary School for Math Science and Engineering, a public school. There, she worked with her colleagues to acquire a vacant plot of land in the Morningside Heights neighborhood of Manhatten to start a school gardening program which is still thriving today.  After completing an MA in Biology Education for Secondary School, Sarah taught high school biology at the Waldorf School in Manhattan. Upon relocating with her family across the Hudson River, Sarah was thrilled to join RFA in its mission to bring children onto the land and connect them to joys of growing and harvesting the food that nourishes us all.

Megan Diaz, Operations Manager

Megan Diaz joined the RFA staff in October 2017. She grew up in the neighborhood behind Cropsey Community Farm and feels a deep connection to this land. Megan holds a BA with a double major in Cultural Studies and Visual Arts from Prescott College in Prescott, Arizona and an MFA in Visual Arts from Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers University in New Brunswick, NJ. She spent her college summer breaks working and learning on organic farms in New York, Maine, and Arizona and felt that farm work was different from any other work she had done previously- it felt rooted and honest. She has worked in non-profit administration at The Center for Photography at Woodstock in Woodstock, NY and as an instructor at Rutgers University and Rockland Community College. In 2015 and 2016, Megan attended the Year-Long Training in Biodynamic Farming at the Pfeiffer Center in Chestnut Ridge, NY. Megan is passionate about art, social justice, sustainable living, and herbal medicine. After beginning a career in the art world and the birth of her son, Wari, Megan has chosen a path working in agriculture, desiring a life of living more closely connected to the Earth.

Adam Rauth, Cropsey Community Farm Foreman

Kathy Rauth, Farm Educator

Tim Munzer, Cropsey Community Farm Crew Member

Tim is a New Jersey native who graduated with a BA Environmental Studies and Psychology from Ramapo College. During a semester abroad in South India, he got to experience subsistence agriculture and gained a deep appreciation for farming. Tim spent his first season at Cropsey Farm in 2017. He loves to work with the land and elements to provide people with freshly grown fruits and veggies. He hopes to continue to help people and the planet become healthier through sustainable land use. When Tim is not farming, he enjoys hiking, rock and roll music, and meditation (sometimes all at once!).

Officers & Board of Directors

John McDowell, President, Chairman of the Board

John McDowell is an award-winning musician, composer, farmer, and president of Rockland Farm Alliance. He grew up in Champaign, Illinois and worked long summer days in the corn and soybean fields on farms as a teenager in the summer months. Throughout his career as a professional musician he continued his connection with agriculture by visiting and helping out on farms. After moving to Rockland County, he and his wife revived Camp Hill Farm in Pomona and started the first CSA in the county. In 2007, John formed Rockland Farm Alliance, which has received strong support from the Rockland community and governmental officials to facilitate local sustainable agriculture in Rockland County.

Joan Dye Gussow, Vice-president, Author and Food Policy Expert

Marvin Nyman, Treasurer, CPA

Mary Lukens, Secretary, Local food Advocate and Realtor

Irene Hamburger, Vice-President Blue Hill Restaurant at Stone Barns

Kate Wysokowski, Public Affairs Manager for Orange and Rockland Utilities

Peggy Gilbert, Former Director of Refugee Resettlement network for World Relief

Kerrin Kissel, Director Of Development – ‎Blauvelt Dominicans – Sisters of Saint Dominic

Patricia Intrator, Local Food Advocate


Advisory Board

Alexandra Spadea, RFA Co-Founder
Angela Lindvall, Founder of Collage Foundation
Virginia Kasinki, Director of Community-Based Programs, Glynwood Center
Anna Hammond Executive Director, Sylvia Center
Ellen Peck, Non-profit consultant
John Wickes Owner, Wickes Arborists
Dan Moschetti
Deverell Pedersen, Non-profit consultant and food policy grant writer