Patty ClarkPatty Clark currently serves as USDA Rural Development State Director in Kansas. She oversees five field offices and the state office located in Topeka, Kansas. Rural Development administers and manages more than 40 housing, business, and community infrastructure and community facility programs designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities. Prior to her current appointment, Clark served as a Division Director for Ag Marketing and Community Development in the Kansas Department of Commerce and as Director of Operations for the Kansas Leadership Center.

Patty Clark will be presenting the following on Saturday:

8:45 a.m. USDA Rural Development Beginning Farmer Opportunities
Local and regional food systems will receive a critical boost through the 2014 farm bill, with additional support for food hubs, farmers markets and on-farm businesses with a local or regional focus. In particular, the act supports increased economic activity through the creation and expansion of infrastructure, business services and supply chain coordination, and new connections between rural food producers and regional market opportunities. Such efforts boost the economic health of rural areas because, as USDA research shows, money spent on food produced locally stays local and expands the potential for job creation and economic growth — ultimately supporting strong local economies and expanded opportunity for rural Kansans.

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