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Board Members

Robert BarleyRobert N. Barley

On May 18, 2018, Governor Tom Wolf named Robert N. Barley to the Pennsylvania Milk Marketing Board. Mr. Barley was unanimously confirmed by the State Senate on June 18, 2018.

Rob is a co-owner in Star Rock Farms, along with his brother Tom and cousin Abe, where they milk 1,500 cows, in addition to operating several other farm businesses which include crop farming, hog finishing, a broiler operation and custom cattle feedlot.

Rob is responsible for the financial aspects of the businesses, including banking relationships and legal and tax issues. Rob also manages the businesses’ human resources, with 60 people employed by Star Rock. Rob has also successfully worked to develop markets for Star Rock products and increase risk management efforts.

In addition to his role within Star Rock, Rob is currently a member of the Lancaster County Ag Council’s executive committee and serves on the Lancaster County Extension Board. He is a former board member of the Lancaster County Chamber of Commerce and the Farm and Home Foundation.

Rob is the Ministry Council Vice Chairman and Missions Chairman at Grace Community Church of Willow Street. He and his wife Shelly have four children, ranging in ages from 15 to 26, and one granddaughter.

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James A. Van BlarcomJames A. Van Blarcom
Board Member

Jim Van Blarcom of Columbia Cross Roads, Bradford County, was unanimously confirmed by the state senate on June 17, 2014 to serve as a member of the Pennsylvania Milk Marketing Board.

Mr. Van Blarcom is a dairy farmer with 40 years experience in the Pennsylvania dairy industry. With his son and two sons-in-law, he manages a 500 cow dairy farm. Mr. Van Blarcom also owns, with his brother, a 5,600 farrow to wean hog facility.

Mr. Van Blarcom served as a member of the Pennsylvania State Conservation Commission from 2012 until his appointment to the Board. He also was a director of the Bradford County Conservation district from 1989 until his appointment to the Board, serving as chairman from 1999 to 2009. Mr. Van Blarcom’s public service also includes serving as a Troy Area School District Director and as a member of the Troy Area School District Foundation, of which he was a founding member, since 2003.

In addition to his public service, Mr. Van Blarcom has been active in dairy and agricultural organizations. He was a Bradford-Sullivan County Farm Bureau Director from 1990 to 2005, serving as County President from 1995 to 2005. Mr. Van Blarcom has also been a member of the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau State Dairy and Natural Resources Advisory Committees. He has also served on the American Dairy Association and Dairy Council board.

Mr. Van Blarcom has also received the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Resources Chesapeake Bay Clean Water Award and the Bradford County Conservation District Outstanding Operator Award.

“I am honored to be appointed and excited for the opportunity to serve Pennsylvania dairy families, citizens, milk dealers, and the entire Pennsylvania dairy industry,” Mr. Van Blarcom stated regarding his appointment.

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Carol A. HardbargerCarol A. Hardbarger
Consumer Member

Carol A. Hardbarger was appointed to the Board by Governor Tom Wolf and was unanimously confirmed by the Pennsylvania Senate on June 18, 2018.

Dr. Carol Hardbarger holds a Ph.D. in Agricultural and Extension education with a minor in Demography from Penn State University. She began her career in the public schools nearly 40 years ago teaching agriculture (specialty animal science), biology and chemistry. While earning her master’s degree she served as a Research Assistant at Penn State and later for the PA Council on Vocational Education. During her doctoral program and working full time at Penn State she was responsible for applied biology and chemistry workshops for science and agriculture teachers and taught several agricultural education and research methods classes. Her dissertation focused on factors influencing job choice of rural youth in PA and won the Outstanding Research Award (for vocational-technical education) at the 1997 American Education Research Association.

Dr. Hardbarger was on the faculty of Cornell University’s Education Department and developed a research program focused on systemic reform in education. She has over 40 refereed publications, research reports (e.g., including national study on aquaculture education sponsored by USDA), and many refereed and invited presentations. She conceptualized and coordinated a national project to develop standards for teacher education in agriculture (still in use today), organizing a coalition of stakeholders and partners as well as securing federal funding for the initiative. Dr. Hardbarger’s most recent employment was as Chief Educator for the GLOBE Program, a multi-agency environmental education program started by Vice-President Al Gore in the mid-1990s, followed by work with SRI International as a Senior Researcher. In that position she managed the US Department of Education’s research on the Title II, Part D portion of the No Child Left Behind Act.

Currently, Dr. Hardbarger is retired and does consulting and research work for a variety of organizations including the National Association of Agricultural Educators, the Propane Council, the PA Association of Agricultural Educators, and others. She lives in Newport, PA and is the proud grandmother of five and great-grandmother of three. A native of Franklin County, Pennsylvania, Dr. Hardbarger also volunteers with the Perry County Community Fair and in her spare time enjoys gardening, reading, and crocheting.

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