NJDA Hosts Annual BBQ at Demarest Farm EPC/Nolan Family Foundation Scholarships Awarded

The New Jersey Department of Agriculture hosted the EPC’s Annual BBQ at Demarest Farm in Hillsdale, NJ, on Tuesday, May 25th.  It was a beautiful spring night for NJDA staff, New Jersey farmers, and EPC members to gather again at the farm; everyone was thrilled to be together again!

Doug Fisher, New Jersey’s Secretary of Agriculture, was the moderator for the state’s presentation which included comments from John Banscher of the NJ Vegetable Growers Assn., Annie Pape of Frank Donio Inc. and the NJ Blueberry Council, and Lew DeEugenio of the NJ Peach Council. 

Following the Crop updates, EPC’s Executive Director. Susan McAleavey Sarlund, announced the EPC’s Slate of Officers for 2021/2022.  Susan thanked Floyd Avillo and John Vasapoli who were stepping down after years of service to the council and welcomed new Officers Rich Martin and Anthony Latona. 

On behalf of the Nolan Family Foundation and Theresa Nolan, Susan announced the winner of this year’s $5,000 Annual EPC/Nolan Family Foundation Scholarship to Andi Summer Eklund, daughter of EPC member and USDA State Statistician, Bruce Eklund.  Andi will be attending University of Pittsburgh this fall.  This marks the 7th year the EPC offered the scholarship together with Theresa and her Family Foundation and what makes this scholarship unique is that it is based solely on the essay that applicants write about an ethical situation they were faced with and how they responded.  All essays are reviewed by the Nolan Family Foundation, not the Eastern Produce Council.

Pictured from left to right are: Susan McAleavey Sarlund, EPC Executive Director, Joe Atchison III, Director of NJDA Division of Marketing and Development, Kelly Davis, EPC Vice President and Director of Produce and Floral at Allegiance Retail Services, Marianne Santo, EPC President and Senior Category Manager Produce and Floral at Wakefern Food Corp., and Doug Fisher, New Jersey Secretary of Agriculture.
Pictured L to R are: Susan McAleavey Sarlund, Marianne Santo, Bruce Eklund, Andi Summer Eklund, Josie Eklund, and Doug Fischer.
Picture Lto R are EPC Board Members Al Murray, Kelly Davis, Rich Martin, Steve Oroszlany, George Moskal, Marc Goldman, Dan Schneider, Theresa Lowden, Tracy Simmonds, Marianne Santo, and Susan McAleavey Sarlund.