• Brian O'Dwyer
    Chair of New York State Gaming Commission

    A lifelong New Yorker, Brian O’Dwyer has been an advocate for working men and women and immigrants.

    A graduate of the High School of Music and Art (now LaGuardia High School) he went on to obtain a Bachelor of Arts from The George Washington University in Spanish American Literature, a Masters in Spanish from Middlebury College, a Juris Doctor degree from Georgetown University and a LLM from The George Washington University Law School. He has been awarded the degrees of D. Phil from Dublin City University and DHL from Middlebury College.

    He was the founder and first Chair of the Emerald Isle Immigration Center, and served as advisor to the Clinton administration during the Northern Ireland peace process. He was appointed by President Clinton to the Presidential Commission on White House Fellows, and Secretary Clinton to the U.S. Committee for UNESCO. He has spent the majority of his professional career advising labor organizations and immigrant rights groups on workers protections and benefits issues.

  • Richard A. Ball
    Commissioner of New York State Agriculture & Markets

    Richard Ball

    A native New Yorker, Mr. Ball has made a living in agriculture his entire life. His inspiration to become a farmer came from his grandparents, who were lifelong dairy farmers. At 18 years old, Mr. Ball began his career in agriculture as a farm worker at a vegetable farm in Rhode Island. He later became operations manager of that same farm. After 20 years in Rhode Island, Mr. Ball moved back to the Empire State with an opportunity to become a farm owner. For the past 20 years, he has been the owner and operator of Schoharie Valley Farms in Schoharie, NY, which consists of 200 acres and produces a wide range of vegetable crops, small fruits and greenhouse crops. The farm serves both retail and wholesale consumers through an onsite farm market known as “The Carrot Barn” and ships to brokers and restaurants in the local area as well as New York City. Mr. Ball has held a number of positions within agriculture and community organizations at the local, state and national level, including:

    • Vice President - New York State Vegetable Growers Association
    • Board of Directors, Member of Executive Committee, Member of Audit Committee, Chairman of Labor Committee - New York Farm Bureau
    • Member of Labor Committee (past Chairman) - American Farm Bureau
    • Representative for Schoharie County - Mohawk Valley Regional Economic Development Council
    • Board of Directors (past President) - Schoharie County Farm Bureau
    • President - Schoharie Valley Association
    • Chairman - Schoharie Recovery, Inc., a non-profit formed to help the recovery effort from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee
    • Past President - Schoharie County Chamber of Commerce

    Mr. Ball, his wife Shirley, and his three children are actively engaged in farming with a growing number of future farmers among the grandchildren.

  • Steve Jones

    Steve Jones owns Cameo Hills Farm and he and his family have built it into a premier Standardbred breeding and boarding facility located on 425 acres in Montgomery, Orange County, New York. He started the farm in 1982 with his father, the late Hall of Famer Hal Jones. It is home to approximately 100 broodmares, raises nearly 60 yearlings every year, and stands stallions Huntsville and So Surreal. Mr. Jones runs the farm with his wife Kathy and sons Tyler and Jake. Mr. Jones also actively serves on the board of both The Hambletonian Society and The Grand Circuit. As a longtime member of the Board of Directors at Goshen Historic Track, he has served as President since 2014. He has also been a member of the Board of Trustees at the Harness Racing Museum and Hall of Fame since 2013.

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