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Photo of new State Board of Agriculture members Scott Ellis and Ann Dorsett - Click to enlarge
Ellis, Dorsett Sworn in to 4-Year Terms
For Immediate Release: January 23, 2008
Contact: Lynne Richmond
(609) 633-2954

(TRENTON) – A horse farmer from Gloucester County and a sweet corn and soybean farmer from Mercer County were sworn in today as the two newest members of the New Jersey State Board of Agriculture.

Ann M. Dorsett of Woolwich Township and W. Scott Ellis of Yardville were seated at the January State Board of Agriculture meeting in Trenton on January 23.  They were selected for the positions at the February 2007 State Agricultural Convention and later nominated by Governor Jon S. Corzine and confirmed by the State Senate. 

“Both Ms. Dorsett and Mr. Ellis are welcome additions to the State Board, who bring a wealth of experience in New Jersey’s agriculture industry to their new positions,” said New Jersey Secretary of Agriculture Charles M. Kuperus. “Each has their own strengths that will be crucial as the Board formulates policy for the Department of Agriculture that will keep the industry green and growing.”

Dorsett and her husband, Larry, own and operate Dorsett Farms in Woolwich Township, a 70-acre horse farm that focuses on breeding, raising and marketing Arabian Pleasure horses. The couple began breeding and selling horses in the 1960’s. 

Born and raised on a 160-acre small crops farm in Eastern Kansas, Dorsett acquired a Masters Degree in Social Work and held the position of Director of Social Work at the Medical University of South Carolina and President of the South Carolina’s social worker association. 

Ann was a 2007 recipient of a Distinguished Service Citation from the State Board of Agriculture for her outstanding contributions to agriculture in New Jersey.  She has served as President of the Gloucester County Board of Agriculture and chairperson of the board’s Equine Committee.  She has been active in various agricultural organizations, including New Jersey Farm Bureau, the Equine Advisory Board, Mid-Atlantic Arabian Horse Association and the New Jersey Animal Alliance. 

W. Scott Ellis assumed management of Ellis Farms, a 700-acre producer of fresh market sweet corn and soybeans in Mercer and Burlington counties in 1980.  Ellis has been owner and operator of the farm, first established in 1950, since 1995. 

Ellis is a director of the New Jersey Vegetable Growers Association, a Supervisor of the Mercer County Soil Conservation District, a member and past president of the Mercer County Board of Agriculture and a Director of Farmers Brokerage and Supply.  He also was Chairman of the New Jersey Fish and Game Council and has served on the New Jersey Water Supply Advisory Council.

In addition, during the meeting, William V. Griffin, a nursery owner from Plainsboro, Middlesex County, was elected to serve as President of the Board, and Milton “Woody” Eachus, a dairy farmer from Pilesgrove, Salem County, was selected as Vice-President.

The State Board of Agriculture, comprising eight members, is the policy-making body of the New Jersey Department of Agriculture. Its members serve for four years, with two members being replaced each year. By law, at least four of its members must represent the top commodity groups in the state.  Members serve without salary, but may be reimbursed for expenses.