Farmhearts Inc

The Farmhearts Scholarship Encourages
Educators and Students

The Farmhearts Scholarship

“The scholarship has made a big difference in the way people felt about participating in the class and themselves. It was almost as if someone else’s demonstration of a concern for their projects made it easier for the students to believe in themselves.”

That is Kirstin Geeslin, Director of Continuing Education and Lifelong Learning, talking about out Farmhearts scholarships that enable farmers to participate in Value Added Food Production classes at Sullivan County Community College.

Value-added classes were taught by a number of local food producers and preparers including Beth Linskey, Mary Tonjes and Jill Padua.

Beth Linskey is the founder of Beth’s Farm Kitchen. She has been making jams and chutneys with locally grown produce since 1981.

Mary Tonjes, of Tonjes Farm Dairy, and her husband Tim have been producing cheese on their family farm since 2003.

Jill Padua of Jill’s Kitchen produces unique Open Sesame sauces, best known for Pride of New York and Pure Catskills products.

For information about upcoming value-added classes:

Lending a Hand to the Hands that Feed

Our mission is to help family farms in the Catskills, whether by lending assistance through grants, helping to bring added value to a farm’s existing products, offering grassroots support for marketing or distribution or helping open the door to the next generation of farmers.

We are committed to lending a hand to the hands that feed us.

Join us in helping preserve an American tradition and the beautiful farmland we all love.

Goals and Objectives

  • Work with local communities to support our farmers
  • Help open the door to the next generation of farmers
  • Raise awareness about the importance and benefits of locally produced food
  • Support local initiatives that benefit the farming community
  • Forge connections between the farming community and new marketplaces

Heather Carlucci-Rodriguez

Heather is a restaurateur and award-winning chef determined to provide her customers with local, farm-fresh food. Heather’s family has had a home in Sullivan County since the dawn of time, and she’s committed to preserving its unbelievable front porch views so her daughter can fall in love with them too.

Bruce Ferguson

Bruce devotes most of this time working on shale gas extraction issues with Catskill Citizens for Safe Energy. He lives in western Sullivan County (NY) where he raises vegetables, chickens and bees.

Michael Lang

Michael has been a resident in upstate New York since the late 60’s. As a producer of the Woodstock Festivals he developed a deep commitment to preserving the beauty of our land and the viability of our farming community. He continues to be involved in entertainment and the protection of our environment.

Victoria Lesser

Victoria is a founding member of Farmhearts and is active in local community affairs. She is an interior stylist and designer currently working with the DIY TV network. She restored and runs the historic Old North Branch Inn.

Laurie McFadden

Laurie is an attorney whose practice focuses on advising non-profit organizations. She also works on shale gas extraction issues with Catskill Citizens for Safe Energy and Keep Cochecton Green and serves on the board of Sullivan Alliance for Sustainable Development. Laurie is a dedicated kitchen gardener and is raising a backyard flock of laying hens. She lives in Cochecton, NY with her husband, two temperamental English Bulldogs and three happy cats.

Mark Ruffalo

Mark is an actor, director and father of three and Sullivan County resident. He made Sullivan County his home 12 years ago and has lived and worked all over the world and knows what an important thing it is to preserve the natural character of a place. Mark is an avid gardener and clean water advocate.

Matthew Solomon

Matthew is a former New York City attorney. The joy of growing things in his garden convinced him to relocate to Sullivan County in 2004 to begin a new career as an artist. He currently divides his time between his garden, studio, family and friends.

Jill Wiener

Jill is a ceramic artist, floral designer and grower. She owns two small businesses in western Sullivan County where she makes her home. When not in her studio or garden, Jill spends much of her time working with Catskill Citizens for Safe Energy actively exposing the dangers of shale gas extraction in an effort to keep our water clean.

Tom Wood

Tom makes his home in Sullivan County, where he enjoys the beautiful outdoors offered by the Catskills. As an architect, designer and apprentice landscaper, he is dedicated to growing the community and supporting
local organizations.

We’d Like to Hear from You

We can be reached by mail
Farmhearts, Inc
PO Box 233
Callicoon, New York



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