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Seasoned policy strategist, Karlin, joins OTA

On July 12, the Organic Trade Association, a membership-based business association for organic agriculture and products in North America, announced that Marni Karlin joined OTA staff in Washington as its associate director for legislative and legal affairs.

Ms. Karlin served as counsel for the U.S. Senate judiciary committee’s subcommittee on antitrust, competition policy and consumer rights since 2009.

In a press MarniKarliniformalMarni Karlin (Photo courtesy OTA)release, Christine Bushway, OTA’s executive director and chief executive officer, said “Marni’s experience as counsel to the Senate judiciary committee has given her an in-depth understanding of the legislative process, which will prove invaluable in her role at OTA. In addition, through her work successfully shepherding two bills through committee with bipartisan support and developing a political strategy to move two other bills through the Senate to passage and enactment into law, she has cultivated valued relationships with policy-makers on [Capitol] Hill and those who influence policy off of the Hill.”

Ms. Karlin graduated from The George Washington University with honors in 1998 with a bachelor’s degree in international economics and politics. In 2001, she received her Juris Doctor degree with honors from the University of Chicago Law School, and subsequently was admitted to the New York Bar.

She has served 11 years in private and government legal practice, developing substantial writing, oral communication, research and analytical skills.

Besides her professional skills, she has a passion for sustainable and organic food, and she received a culinary arts diploma, with honors, in 2007 from Le Cordon Bleu in Paris.

Since 2008, in her spare time, she has served as policy adviser and market manager for EcoFriendly Foods, a local sustainable meat producer and processor in Moneta, VA, to formulate its policy goals and congressional testimony.

In her new position with OTA, she will have the opportunity to combine her passion for food and agricultural policy with her legal and legislative knowledge.

“Since opening a D.C. office in early 2010, OTA has made great strides in increasing its visibility and effectiveness with Congress, the Executive Branch and regulatory agencies, including the National Organic Program housed at USDA. Marni’s addition to OTA staff is an important step at a critical time in farm policy development in Congress,” said Ms. Bushway.