Ryan Matthew Maher


Research and Extension Specialist


I joined the Small Farms Program in 2013 to support vegetable farmers in building soil health on their farm. My interest is in how we use reduced tillage, cover cropping, crop rotations, and other soil management practices to protect and promote productive, biologically active soil.

After graduating from SUNY-ESF in 2003, I spent two years training on small-scale diversified vegetable farms in Oregon and Massachusetts. I graduated from Iowa State University in 2017 with an MS in Sustainable Agriculture where I did research on how native grassland restorations can improve soil processes in agriculturally-dominated landscapes. I then spent five years with the USDA-ARS in St. Paul, MN coordinating research on nutrient cycling in perennial forage crops to help farmers reduce nitrogen fertilizer inputs using legumes in crop rotations.

My wife Jackie and I have two girls, Giovanna and Olive, and are happy to settle in CNY and enjoy the food, farms, forested hills, and water of the Finger Lakes region.