Karen Watt is the co-owner of Watt Farms in Albion, and Chairperson of the Board of Oak Orchard Health. She grew up in Amherst, New York and graduated from Ithaca College with a major in math and minor in physics. Karen and her husband, Chris, are leaders in Farm Bureau. Karen was the Orleans County president and served on the state board, advocating for the fruit industry and direct markets. She has travelled the world sharing her expertise in direct marketing and value-added retail. She was president of the North American Farmers Direct Marketing Association, which put her in its “Hall of Fame.” OIC International brought her to visit rural African villages in three countries to help farm families brainstorm ways to increase their revenues.
In addition to her advocacy for migrant farm worker health as a board member of Oak Orchard Health, she has served on the National Advisory Council on Migrant Health, including a year as its chairwoman. She is currently Secretary of the board of the National Center of Farmworker Health and received the 2013 Outstanding Migrant Health Center Board Member Award from the National Association of Community Health Centers.
Karen is also an important advocate for breast cancer research and organizes the annual Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Orchard Walk at Watt Farms each fall. Over 9 years, The Walk has raised over $275,000 for the American Cancer Society.