Waldo County native given senior role in state Agriculture, Conservation, Forestry

Tue, 04/02/2019 - 8:15pm

AUGUSTA — Maine Commissioner of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry Amanda Beal has announced her appointment of Waldo County’s Emily Horton as director of Policy and Community Engagement.

Nancy McBrady, of Lewiston was named director of the Bureau of Agriculture, Food and Rural Resources.

Emily Horton has worked as the Agriculture and Natural Resource Representative for Congresswoman Chellie Pingree.

Horton has worked on natural resource-related policy issues at both the state and federal level for more than a decade. Through the 2018 Farm Bill, she worked to advance programs that support Maine’s resource-based economies, such as through broadband expansion, conservation and research funding, and value-added markets.

Horton grew up on a farm in Waldo County where her family ran a small woodlot and operated a diversified farm. She holds a B.S. degree in Environmental Studies from Lesley University and a Master of Public Health degree from the University of New England.

Previously, she worked at the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association and was the Health Promotion Manager at Central Maine Medical's Healthy Androscoggin Healthy Maine Partnership.

“Emily’s previous experiences and the relationships she’s formed that have helped to bolster Maine’s natural resource sectors, along with the breadth of policy expertise that she brings to our work, will ensure that we can best serve the constituencies of the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry,” said Beal, in a news release.”

“Nancy and Emily are each talented, knowledgeable and well-respected individuals, and to welcome them both as they join us at the Department simultaneously is truly exciting,” she said.

Nancy McBrady has served as the executive director of the Wild Blueberry Commission of Maine. She joined the Wild Blueberry Commission in 2015 and directed programs for marketing and promotion, research and development, and policy engagement. 

During her tenure, McBrady has overseen the launch of a national school foodservice program that has resulted in a 157 percent increase in purchases of frozen Maine wild blueberries by public schools.

McBrady, a Lewiston native, earned a B.A. at Williams College and began her career as a management consultant with AT Kearney in Chicago, before returning to Maine to attend the University of Maine School of Law. She went on to practice environmental, land use, and municipal law at one of the state’s largest law firms.

McBrady possesses a wealth of regulatory and policy experience, and a great enthusiasm for agriculture and its importance to Maine, according to the release.

“We are very fortunate to have Nancy join us in this leadership role in the Bureau of Agriculture, Food and Rural Resources,” said Beal. “Nancy’s experience and creativity, along with her energy and passion for supporting farmers, will greatly benefit our work within the Department and our overall efforts to serve Maine’s diverse agricultural sector.”