AmericanFarm.com

Bartenfelder nominated as Md. secretary of ag

By SEAN CLOUGHERTY
Managing Editor

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (Jan. 6, 2015) — Two days before Christmas, Gov.-elect Larry Hogan announced the appointment of six members to his cabinet including Joseph Bartenfelder, a Baltimore County farmer, as secretary of agriculture.
With close to 30 years holding public office, Bartenfelder was a Democratic member of the Maryland House of Delegates, from 1983-94, representing District 8 in Baltimore County, serving as the deputy majority whip and as a member of  the judiciary and appropriations committees’ Special House Committee on Drug and Alcohol Abuse, the Joint Committee on the Management of Public Funds, the Joint Expenditure Study Group on Law Enforcement and Transportation and chairman of the Baltimore County delegation.
Leaving state office after three terms, Bartenfelder was a Baltimore County councilman from 1994 to 2010, serving as chairman for four of those years. In 2010, Bartenfelder ran for Baltimore County executive, losing to Ken Kamenetz in the Democratic primary. He was 25 when he won his first election to the House of Delegates, but ran for office four years earlier at 21, “to make a difference in the community,” he said in 2010 newspaper interview.
After graduating from what was then called Towson State University in 1978 with a business degree, Bartenfelder managed the family farms in Fullerton and Preston, growing produce for wholesale and retail sale.  He also taught in Baltimore County Public Schools from 1979-81.
Bartenfelder, 58, still manages the fifth generation farm operation of about 120 acres, selling produce at farmers’ markets in Baltimore City and on the Eastern Shore and trucking loads to grocery chain stores and the Maryland Food Center in Jessup, Md. Bartenfelder lives in Fullerton, Md., with his wife Robin and has four children.
Hogan’s other appointments, which await confirmation in the state Senate, were Van Mitchell for secretary of the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Jimmy Rhee for secretary of minority affairs, Linda Singh for Adjutant General, Ben Grumbles for secretary of the Department of the Environment and Charlie Evans for secretary of the Department of Natural Resources