Walton, NY, FEBRUARY 2, 2021– On January 26, 2021 Wayland “Bud” Gladstone was nominated and appointed as the Council Chair for the Watershed Agricultural Council (WAC).
Gladstone, a fifth generation farmer from Andes, NY, owns and operates Gladstone Farms (formally Suz-Way Farm) along with his wife Suzanne and their two daughters and six grandchildren. They operated the family dairy farm until 2003, then transitioned to raising/boarding heifers for other farmers and growing/selling hay. In 2002, Suzanne purchased a few head of Belted Galloway cattle, the beginning of their beef business. To date, Gladstone Farms continues with 175 head of cattle. They currently are experimenting with cross breeding Belted Galloways with British White Park, moving into a “Speckled Breed.” Their markets are freezer trade, restaurants, and at times the feeder market.
Gladstone was chosen in 1984 as the Delaware County Conservation Farmer of the Year, and in the early 1990’s their farm was chosen as one of the original ten watershed pilot farms for the emerging Watershed Agricultural Program in partnership with the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). Through the Whole Farm Planning process and with funding provided by the DEP through the WAC, the Gladstone’s have been able to continue farming more efficiently in the NYC Watershed, implementing many practices, improving animal health, and keeping water quality at the forefront of their operation.
When asked about his new role at the WAC, Gladstone stated, “I feel that I have excellent communication skills, a firm belief in transparency, strong fiscal management skills and the ability to work well with others, respecting the opinion of all. We are very fortunate at the Watershed Agricultural Council to have many highly qualified, skilled and dedicated staff and partnering agencies that bring expertise and staff to support our programs. I view these challenging times as an opportunity for the Watershed Agricultural Council to continue as the leader in Land Stewardship in our Agricultural communities. Successful agricultural programs and farms bring growth and strength to our local economies.”
Gladstone graduated from Andes Central School, and attended SUNY Delhi while operating the family farm with his parents. Active in the Andes community, he has been Fire Chief of the Andes Fire Department, a former member of the Margaretville Hospital Board, has served on the Andes Town Board for the past ten years, six of which as current Town Supervisor. In addition, he is a member of the Delaware County Board of Supervisors, serving on Finance Committee, Human Resources/Insurance Committee and is acting Chair of the Public Safety Committee. He also serves on the Cornell Cooperative Extension Board, Delaware Opportunities Board and is a ten-year Board Member of the WAC where he has served as Chairman of the Agricultural Committee for the past six years. He serves on the Easement Committee, Executive Committee, and Nutrient Management Sub-Committee, in addition to his recent appointment of Council Chair of WAC.
The WAC is looking forward to this new chapter for the organization. Interim Executive Director, Ryan Naatz, stated, “Bud Gladstone is a true leader. One who has the confidence to stand alone (yet chooses to stand with and for many), the courage to make tough decisions, and the compassion and respect to listen to, all. Thank you, Bud, for rising to the challenge and your commitment to succeed.”