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Sponsored by the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at the University of Georgia
North American Agroforestry Conference, Agroforestry: A Profitable Land Use, June 4-9, 2011

Agroforestry: A Profitable Land Use

Conference Proceedings

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General Information

The 12th North American Agroforestry Conference, Agroforestry: A Profitable Land Use, will be held June 4-9, 2011 with the Association of Temperate Agroforestry (AFTA). The conference is hosted by the University of Georgia.

Conference Sessions Listing

Conference Hosts

  • UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences
  • UGA Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources
  • Odum School of Ecology
  • Fort Valley State University
  • Georgia Organics

Conference Sponsors

  • The Association for Temperate Agroforestry (AFTA)
  • The National Institute of Food and Agriculture (USDA/NIFA)
  • United States Forest Service
  • Southern Regional Extension Forestry

Plenary Speakers

Kathleen A. Merrigan is the Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.  Deputy Secretary Merrigan has managed the Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food effort to highlight the critical connection between farmers and consumers and support local and regional food systems that increase economic opportunity in Rural America.  Working alongside Secretary Tom Vilsack, Merrigan oversees the day-to-day operation of USDA's many programs and spearheads the $149 billion USDA budget process. She serves on the President's Management Council, working with other Cabinet Deputies to improve accountability and performance across the federal government.

In November 2009, she made history as the first woman to chair the Ministerial Conference of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. Recognized by Time magazine as among the "100 Most Influential People in the World" in 2010, before becoming Deputy Secretary, Merrigan served for eight years as Assistant Professor and Director of the Agriculture, Food and Environment graduate program at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University, Boston, Massachusetts.

Under an appointment by President Bill Clinton, Merrigan was Administrator of the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service from 1999 to 2001. She served for six years as a senior staff member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, working for Senator Patrick Leahy (VT).  Merrigan has also been engaged in agricultural policy in positions at the FAO, the Henry A. Wallace Institute for Alternative Agriculture, the Texas Department of Agriculture, and the Massachusetts State Senate.  Merrigan holds a Ph.D. degree in environmental planning and policy from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a Master of Public Affairs degree from the University of Texas, and a B.A. degree from Williams College.


Dr. Dennis Garrity, Director General of the World Agroforestry Centre, will be a featured speaker during the opening plenary session. Recognized as the international leader in agroforestry research and development, the Centre promotes global recognition of the key role trees play on farms.

In 2002, Dr. Garrity began as Director General of the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) based in Nairobi, Kenya. He is also currently serving as the Chair of the CGIAR Inter-Centre Working Group on Climate Change. From 1992 to 2002 Dr Garrity served as Regional Coordinator of the ICRAF Southeast Asia Programme, based in Bogor, Indonesia. He created the regional programme, and led the systems improvement research in the region to develop and evaluate agroforestry alternatives to slash-and-burn agriculture. He worked extensively on the development of conservation-oriented agroforestry systems for sloping uplands. He has been active in the development of institutional innovations related to farmer-led organizations in sustainable agriculture and natural resources management. He served as agronomist/crop ecologist and head of the Agroecology Unit at the International Rice Research Institute in the Philippines between 1982 and 1992.

Dr Garrity has a BSc degree in agriculture from Ohio State University, an MSc in agronomy from the University of the Philippines at Los Baños, and a PhD in crop physiology from the University of Nebraska.


Jamshed Merchant, Assistant Deputy Minister, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada began his career in the federal government in Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) in Vegreville, Alberta, within which he held numerous posts: initially working as a soil conservationist in Alberta and Saskatchewan, with his final post being Director General for Strategic Business Planning.  Jamshed continued his federal career with the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat, where he was Assistant Secretary for the Climate Change Review, Sustainable Development, and Aboriginal Affairs. Jamshed was also responsible for supporting the Independent Blue Ribbon Panel on the Delivery Grants and Contributions programs in Canada. Prior to this, Jamshed was Director General of Government on-Line in the Department of Canadian Heritage.

In September 2007, Jamshed Merchant returned to AAFC as Executive Director of the National Land and Water Information Service (NLWIS). In May 2008, he was appointed to the position of Assistant Deputy Minister of the new Agri-Environment Services Branch. With this formation, Jamshed leads the realignment and restructuring of the department’s service delivery points, resources and people for strengthening Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and the Government of Canada’s ability to address agri-environmental priorities.  Jamshed is currently the Canadian co-chair of the Canada-Brazil Consultative Committee on Agriculture.

Mr. Merchant received his Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Science from the University of East Anglia in England. He continued his studies in the United Kingdom at the University of Reading where he received a Master of Science in Pedology and Soil Survey.  After his studies, Jamshed moved to Canada and became Faculty Lecturer/Research Associate in the Department of Geography at McGill University in Montréal, Quebec.