Virginia Tech® home

Katie Commender

Agroforestry Director at Appalachian Sustainable Development

Katie Commender is the Agroforestry Director at Appalachian Sustainable Development. Katie has developed a Herb Hub in SW VA to help local forest farmers process and market their medicinal herbs, as well as the Central Appalachian Food Corridor to connect vegetable farmers in WV, KY and OH with wholesale markets along the east coast. Katie first joined ASD in 2012 as a Sustainable Forestry AmeriCorps VISTA, where she developed and managed a multifunctional riparian forest buffer program with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. From 2014-2016, Katie pursued her M.S. in Forestry with Virginia Tech's Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation Department. Her research 1) identified the types of landowners that have adopted conservation buffers and evaluated their perceptions of and intentions to retain them, and 2) determined their preferences for native fruit, nut and floral trees and shrubs in multifunctional conservation buffers.