On January 9, 2014, Richard A. Ball was nominated as Commissioner of the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets.
Steve McGrattan is First Deputy Commissioner for the Department of Agriculture and Markets. In this role, he oversees the Department's deputy commissioners and their divisions, as well as its additional offices including human resources, fiscal management, counsel, internal control, public information, intergovernmental affairs, emergency management, and the Great New York State Fair.
Mr. McGrattan has spent his career in public service. Prior to joining the Department, Steve worked for the Fulton County Planning Department as a planner and for the Office of Community Renewal as an economic development program manager. He joined the Department in 2004 as an economic development program manager and later became director of the division of agricultural development before being appointed First Deputy Commissioner in late 2019.
Mr. McGrattan holds a bachelor's degree in geography from SUNY Geneseo. Outside of work, he is an avid traveler and explorer, spending much of his time outside and volunteering as an advisor with the Fonda/Fultonville Central School District's outdoor club. He also sings in the choir at St. John's Episcopal Church.
Nicole Leblond was appointed Deputy Commissioner for two critical divisions at the Department of Agriculture and Markets, Agricultural Development and Weights and Measures, 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.
Elizabeth Wolters serves as Deputy Commissioner for the Department of Agriculture and Markets. In this capacity, she oversees the Department’s Divisions of Plant Industry, Land and Water Resources, and Animal Industry. Under her direction, these departments administer a wide array of programs to protect the state’s plant and land resources as well as animal and public health.
Prior to her appointment, Ms. Wolters worked for New York Farm Bureau as both Deputy Director of Public Policy and Senior Associate Director of National Affairs where she gained expertise on energy, climate, environmental, and dairy policy as well as Federal Farm Bill programs. She also worked in the State legislature in several capacities. Ms. Wolters holds masters degree in business administration from the Sage Colleges and a bachelors degree from Siena College.
Damali Wynter serves as the Department’s Assistant Commissioner for Project Development and Outreach. In this capacity, she leads strategic relationship-building activities between government agencies, educational institutions, and private organizations, and is involved in the creation of new opportunities, such as improving access to federal- and state-level resources. She oversees New York State’s Council on Hunger and Food Policy and participates as a member of a wide range of commissions and advisory boards. Ms. Wynter’s efforts aim to address barriers to food access, strengthen the pipeline of agricultural leadership diversity within the state, and increase consumer awareness of their food system prior to purchase.
Prior to joining the Department in 2022, Ms. Wynter’s career in state government began as a fellow placed in the Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation to leave as Senior Business Development and Strategic Contracts Specialist working on high-profile projects statewide and executive initiatives. Prior to public service, she held leadership roles in education and entertainment production industries. She continues to enjoy applying her complex project management skillset to a variety of purposes.
Ms. Wynter earned her master’s degree in public administration from New York University (NYU), preceded by a bachelor’s from Syracuse University. She enjoys improvement of distressed properties as part of community investment and volunteering as a board member for Humanities New York.