Board of Directors
Lynn Graves, Chair
Lynn Graves has been a Director representing Madison County since 2005. Mr. Graves graduated from Virginia Tech in 1995 and was a member of the National Agricultural Fraternity, Alpha Gamma Rho. He has been a member of the Virginia Apple Growers Association Board and the Virginia State Apple Board. He also is serving on the Virginia Agribusiness Council Board and was the chairman in 2016. He also serves as President of the Virginia Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts. Mr. Graves and his family own and operate Graves Mountain Lodge and Farm, which is located on the Rose River. The Lodge consists of 55 motel rooms and 17 cabins, and the farm consists of crop fields, pasture for 100 head of cattle and 30 acres of apple orchards. Also a cannery is operated by the Graves family which produces jams and jellies, and apple cider, along with the favorite apple butter. The Graves Mountain hosts numerous festivals during the year, Music Festival, Apple Festival, Heritage Day (Fishing for kids) and more. The Farm does school tours for 7,000 school children annually to promote agriculture. For the past 16 years the Farm has also run aquatic programs that teach children about watersheds, rivers and ponds. Mr. Graves and his wife, Tricia have 2 children, Amelia and Cole. The Graves family have been living in the Syria area for over 5 generations.
Mike Sands, Vice Chair
Mike Sands was elected as a Director for Rappahannock County in 2019. Michael is the District’s Vice-Chairperson and serves on the Technical Committee. Mike and his wife are the owner/operators of Bean Hollow Grassfed, a pasture-based sheep and cattle farm in Flint Hill, VA. The farm practices include a number of BMPs including rotational grazing of a combined “flerd” of cattle and sheep, riparian area exclusion, and warm season native grasses. Mike was the Founding Executive Director of the Liberty Prairie Foundation in Grayslake, IL. He is now a Senior Associate with Dietel and Partners, a philanthropic consulting company.
Tom O’Halloran was born and raised in Culpeper and graduated from Culpeper County High School in 1963. He received a degree in engineering from Virginia Tech. He owns Glengary Tree Farm in Rixeyville. The farm was originally a cow/calf operation but, under the advice of his father, he started planting Christmas trees in 1978. Mr. & Mrs. O’Halloran have a son and a daughter plus 4 grandchildren and is expecting his first great grandchild. His hobbies include motorcycle riding and reading. He is chairman of the Ag/Forestal Advisory Committee and is a member of the Culpeper County Economic Advisory Committee. He is on the Extension Leadership Council and is a past director of the Virginia Farm Direct Marketing Association, past president of the Virginia Christmas Tree Growers Association and past director of the National Christmas Tree Growers Association. In 2002, the State Capitol Christmas tree at the Governor’s mansion was from Glengary. In 2011, Mr. O’Halloran was appointed to represent CSWCD on the Rappahannock River Basin Commission and in 2016 was appointed to its Executive Council.
Mike Biniek was appointed to fill the unexpired term of Mike Peterson in December 2016, representing Rappahannock County. He was elected to his first full term in November 2019. Twenty-three years ago, Mike Biniek and Susan Hoffman left their urban life to fulfill their dream of creating a model community for sustainable living. Belle Meade has grown into what it is today because of their flexible, nurturing patience as they developed the different components of their holistic vision. Mike, B.S. in Biology, is a lifelong student of nature and wildlife. He practices his ideology of creating a more sustainable, healthy planet as he cares for the animals, plants, and community of Belle Meade.
Robert Bradford was elected a Director representing Orange County in 1996 after serving as an Associate Director for three years. He lives in Orange County with his wife Virginia and his daughter Stella. He owns and operates a beef cattle operation and has been a building contractor specializing in renovations. He is very supportive of BMPs and water quality and has an active roof water collection system on his farm. Mr. Bradford’s activity as Director includes Technical Committee Chair.
J. Robert Brame III
Bob Brame grew up on a working farm in Western Kentucky, but like many farm youths he was lured to the city. After almost 50 years practicing law in Richmond, Washington and Charlottesville, he retired in 2014 and swapped Kentucky farmland for a small cattle farm near Gordonsville. He has worked closely with Culpeper SWCD staff and NRCS to implement and expand on the conservation vision he inherited from his Father. These conservation practices, including rotational grazing, eradication of invasives, replacement of KY 31 fescue with novel endophyte fescue and restoring native warm season grasses. He heard the first Bobwhite call and is still looking for dung beetles and listening for whip-poor-wills. He remains hopeful that his grandchildren will see the return of native species. Bob was elected a Greene County director in 2007 and 2011 and an Orange Director in 2015 and 2019.
David Cox was elected as a Director representing Greene County in 2023. His term began in January 2024.
L. Bradford Jarvis
Brad Jarvis is the Extension Agent, Agriculture for Virginia Cooperative Extension in Madison County. He received his degrees in Animal Science and Extension Education from Virginia Tech in 1987. Over his 30 year Extension career, he has worked with farmers, agri-business and community leaders to disseminate researched based information and developed educational programs in agricultural production and sustainability with an emphasis on nutrient management planning, cover crops, integrated pest management, commercial fruit production, forage production, local food systems and community strategic planning. Mr. Jarvis is a member of the Madison Young Farmers, Madison Farm Bureau Board, Virginia Forage and Grassland Council, Central Virginia Cattlemen Association and National Association of County Agriculture Agents. Effective January 3, 2017 Brad serves as an Associate Director on the Culpeper SWCD Board.
Anthony Jewett was elected as a Director representing Madison County in 2023. His term began in January 2024.
Steve Morris was appointed as an Associate Director in 2006 and became an appointed At-Large Director in December 2013. He was born and raised in Greene County and graduated from William Monroe High School in 1966. From 1974-1990 he worked in quality control on the construction of nuclear power plants. From 1991-2009 he raised beef cattle on 165 acres. All of the streams on the farm are fenced out from livestock and some acres are in CREP. He received the 2000 Bay Friendly Farm Award from CSWCD. His farm is now used for hay production. Mr. Morris and his wife, Sharon, have one daughter. In his spare time he enjoys hunting, fishing, golf and muscle car restoration. Steve’s farm in protected in a conservation easement. Mr. Morris was appointed to represent CSWCD on the Rivanna River Basin Commission.
Robert Runkle was elected Director representing Greene County in 2001. His Greene County Century Farm has been family owned for over 200 years. He graduated from James Madison University with a degree in Social Studies Education and was a teacher for 31 years. He was on the committee that prepared the original Greene County Comprehensive Plan, served on the Planning Commission and is a member of the Board of Zoning Appeals. He is a member of the Greene County Farm Bureau Board of Directors. He is a past recipient of a CSWCD conservation award and has implemented numerous conservation practices over the years. He, and his wife, Janet, have two daughters. His hobbies include travel and reading. He serves as Chair of the Personnel Committee.
Sarah W. Sharpe
Sarah Sharpe joined the CSWCD Board as an Associate Director in July 2016 and assumed the role of the Appointed Extension Agent Board member in January 2017. She currently serves as the Greene County Agriculture and Natural Resources Agent with a focus in local foods and horticulture. Sarah grew up in Madison County on her family’s pork, beef, hay, and row crop farm. She is very passionate about helping producers start businesses and break into the local foods movement as well as helping to educate consumers about how food is grown and the production methods utilized. Sarah lives in Louisa County with her husband, two daughters, and two dogs.
Dennis Verhoff joined the CSWCD Board as an elected Director from Culpeper County in January 2020. Dennis grew up on a diversified farm in northwestern Ohio that included dairy, hogs, poultry (chickens and ducks), sheep, tomatoes, corn, soybeans, wheat, oats, alfalfa and, in the early 1950s, sugar beets. He is a graduate of the University of Dayton, the University of Pennsylvania and the Ohio State University with degrees in French, Middle Eastern Studies, Arabic and international relations. Among many other endeavors, he was an English teacher in Tunisian public schools as a member of the US Peace Corps. This was a life-changing event in so many ways. After his return to the US, in addition to continuing his education, he taught school in New Jersey, worked a a Senate aide, analyzed and developed international policy in several Washington, DC organizations and owned his own construction business. In 1995, he began an organic vegetable operation in Culpeper County and marketed his produce at farmers’ markets in Charlottesville, Culpeper and the Washington, DC area. In retirement, his travels have taken him to Germany, Italy, China, South Korea, India, Morocco and Iran among other countries.
Bob Williamson was appointed as an Associate Director from Culpeper County in January 2020. Bob was born and raised on a beef cattle and burley tobacco farm near Abingdon, VA. He graduated from Virginia Tech with a Bachelor’s degree in Animal Science, where he was a member of Alpha Gamma Rho Fraternity. He is married to Julie Gentleman Williamson. They have two children, Clifford and Lindsey, who are both Virginia Tech graduates. Bob and Julie are owners and operators of Step at a Time Farm, a horse boarding, breaking and training barn in Reva. Bob is retired from the USDA Farm Service Agency. He is an active 4-H volunteer and adult leader and past member of the Virginia State Extension Leadership Council. He is also an active Farm Bureau member as a Virginia State and American Farm Bureau Convention Delegate and past member of Virginia Farm Bureau Federation Political Action Committee Board of Directors.