On January 9, 2014, Richard A. Ball was nominated as Commissioner of the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets.
Steve McGrattan serves as First Deputy Commissioner for the Department. In this capacity, he oversees the Divisions of Fiscal Management, Human Resources, Public Information, Intergovernmental Affairs, Emergency Management, Internal Audit, the Great New York State Fair, and more. Additionally, he works closely with Deputy Commissioners Czub, Leblond, and Trodden to oversee the Department's additional divisions that fall under their portfolios.
Jacqueline Czub became Deputy Commissioner with the Department in April 2013. In this capacity, Ms. Czub is responsible for overseeing the Department’s Divisions of Plant Industry, Land and Water Resources, and Animal Industry. Under her direction, these divisions implement programs to detect and prevent the spread of plant disease and non-indigenous invasive species, assure properly labeled agricultural inputs, provide technical assistance to farmers on environmental plans and projects, and control and eradicate disease in livestock and poultry. Ms. Czub is also responsible for issues and initiatives related to New York’s equine and craft beverage industries. Prior to her current position, Ms. Czub served as Assistant Secretary for Agriculture in the Executive Chamber.
Ms. Czub has over 18 years of government service with a history of serving as executive staff at the Department, the Department of Environmental Conservation, and the Executive Chamber. She also operated as a private consultant for 10 years specializing in agriculture and environmental and land use issues and projects.
Ms. Czub is a graduate of the University of Delaware and holds a bachelors degree in agricultural business management. Ms. Czub, and her husband Jim and family live in Schaghticoke, New York. The family owns and operates WestWind Ag, a large corn, soybean, and small grain farm.
Nicole Leblond was appointed Deputy Commissioner of Agricultural Development for the Department in November of 2021, where she spearheads critical initiatives including the Nourish New York program, farmers’ market resiliency efforts, and more.
Ms. Leblond previously served as Deputy Communications Director for both Economic Development and Health in the Executive Chamber for the Office of the New York State Governor, working for approximately six years handling crises management, policy development, and strategic communications.
Prior to that, Ms. Leblond worked in the education world serving as both Director of Communications and Manager of Special Projects for local and national charter school organizations including The Brighter Choice Foundation and National Heritage Academies.
Early in her career, Ms. Leblond worked as Deputy Press Secretary and spokesperson for New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli, covering various issues including local governments, school accountability, retirement, and not-for-profits, and also led critical marketing and campaign efforts through her work as a Public Affairs and Public Relations Account Executive at Eric Mower and Associates.
Ms. Leblond received her bachelor’s degree in business administration from Russell Sage College in Troy, New York, and her master’s degree in business administration at The College of Saint Rose.
As Deputy Commissioner with the Department, Ms. Trodden oversees three of the Department’s largest divisions - the Divisions of Food Safety Inspection, Milk Control and Dairy Services, and the New York State Food Laboratory.
Ms. Trodden has an extensive compliance and policy background and, as the primary food safety advisor for the Department, is integrally involved in policy and programmatic issues affecting the broad areas of food safety across both New York State and the United States. Jennifer serves on the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture’s (NASDA) Produce Safety Implementation Group and is a member of the NASDA Food Safety Steering committee.
Prior to joining the Department Ms. Trodden worked as the New York Environmental Health and Safety Regional Manager for PepsiCo, and spent more than 10 years at the State University of New York’s Poly-Technical Institute as their Environmental, Health, and Safety Manager. Additionally, she was an environmental and safety consultant to General Electric, was the Quality Control Manager at SCILAB, and began her career in public service as a health inspector at the Department of Health in Dublin, Ireland.
Ms. Trodden has been executing public policy for over 20 years; holds a master’s degree in Environmental Health from Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland; is a Certified Safety Professional; is an advisory member on numerous boards across New York State; and is currently enrolled in the Juris Doctorate program at Northwestern University in California.