Fri, Jul 29|
LIFB Annual Awards Gala
Please join us as we celebrate the achievements of our farmer members and citizens for their work on behalf of the agricultural industry. Dinner and refreshments are included. Tickets for the event are $80 pp
Time & Location
Jul 29, 2022, 5:30 PM – 10:30 PM
Polish Hall, 214 Marcy Ave, Riverhead, NY 11901, USA
About the event
Long Island Farm Bureau gathers yearly to celebrate achievements of our farmer members and citizens for their work on behalf of the agricultural industry. Due to health and safety concerns surrounding the pandemic, we had postponed the gala planned for spring of 2020. As things continue to calm down and restrictions are being lifted, we are excited to at last give our awardees the celebration they deserve.
We will be holding a press conference that evening at 5:30pm to allow for proclamation and citations to be presented to our award winners in advance. The two selected and very deserving award winners are:
Jeff Rottkamp - Amherst Davis Memorial Farmer Citizen Award
Jeff Rottkamp has been an active member of Long Island Farm Bureau serving as a board member, treasurer, secretary, and a voting delegate for annual meeting, as well as participating in lobby days for many years. As the owner/operator of Rottkamp’s Farm (Fox Hollow Farm) on Sound Avenue in Calverton, he grows tomatoes, melons, rhubarb, asparagus, squash, cucumbers, pumpkins, fall crops, sunflowers, strawberries, and other farmstand items. The farm also runs a seasonal Pick Your Own Strawberry and Pumpkin operations, and is known across Long Island for their sweet corn.
Jeff’s family came from Germany in the early 1800’s. They landed in New York and pursued many occupations including agriculture. As with many Long Island farm families over the past few generations, Jeff’s family started farming in Western Nassau County and moved East over the years as development pressure increased. Today they have settled in Calverton and currently farm on 220 acres, approximately half planted in sweet corn. Jeff resides in Calverton with his wife Judy, and has two sons Jeff Jr., Jason, one granddaughter Avery Marie, and one grandson Jacob Henry. Jeff’s mother, Lolly, is still active on the farm. In the community, Jeff serves on the Riverhead Agricultural Advisory Committee, Suffolk County Farmland Preservation Committee, Riverhead TDR Committee, Hallockville, and the Long Island Antique Power Association, all in various capacities.
Jeff attended St. John’s School in Riverhead and is a Mercy High School Graduate. Jeff wanted to be a farmer at a very early age and went to work full time on the farm once he graduated high school. Jeff’s father Jacob (also an Amherst Davis award winner) was an inspiration to Jeff and a role model in shaping his life. You could easily say farming was in his blood and his passion for growing crops is still there today.
Pat Wiles - Long Island Farm Bureau Citizen Award
Patrick K. Wiles is currently Branch Manager of Farm Credit East, ACA, for the Riverhead Branch. He has been with Farm Credit for 35 years, 33 of these years serving Long Island farmers at the Riverhead office. Farm Credit provides credit, appraisals, and finance services for agriculture. Pat is a three-time winner as a Paul Harris Fellow and a Mill Neck School for the Deaf Honoree. In addition, he is active in many farm, horticulture, and wine related organizations. Also active in the community, Pat has been a member of Riverhead Rotary for 20 years, serving as Chairman of the “Rotary Uncorked” Event for 13 plus years. He is a board member of Camp Pa-qua-tuck in East Moriches, benefiting physically and mentally challenged children of Long Island. Pat goes above and beyond just being a member of Long Island Farm Bureau, he assists with fundraisers and obtaining new supporters while he himself supports all LIFB events.
Pat is a Cornell University graduate with a degree in Agricultural Economics. His father was a Cornell Cooperative Extension agent in Tioga County, and his family had a part-time farm raising vegetables and livestock with a roadside farmstand. As a youth, Pat was active in 4-H. Currently Pat resides in Cutchogue with his wife Florence and their 2 children Sam and Hannah.
This year we will also be presenting a special award to Senator Kenneth LaValle for his support of Long Island Agriculture over his 45 years of service as Senator of the 1st District. Senator LaValle announced his retirement at the end of his term in 2020.
Press Conference & Proclamations
Cocktails & Dinner