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Home > News > Press Releases > Veteran journalist Maggie McNeil joins OTA as head of Media Relations team

Veteran journalist Maggie McNeil joins OTA as head of Media Relations team

Barbara Haumann
(802) 275-3820
Washington , DC
May 8, 2014
) — 

The Organic Trade Association (OTA) has taken another important step in expanding the message and critical story of organic products to the public by hiring accomplished writer and editor Maggie McNeil as its Director of Media Relations. 

“We are thrilled to have Maggie join the OTA team. A key goal of OTA is to enhance the awareness, understanding and value of organic food, fiber and farming trade, and Maggie’s solid experience in reporting on agricultural issues, and her knowledge of the media will provide a significant step forward in achieving this goal,” said Laura Batcha, OTA’s CEO and Executive Director.

McNeil has spent more than 20 years writing about the food and agricultural sector. Her in-depth experience includes positions with global news organizations, the American Soybean Association, and a prominent agri-business consulting firm. Most recently, McNeil was with the financial news website MarketWatch, a division of Dow Jones, where for 13 years she was an editor in the Washington, D.C., bureau. Her impressive career also includes 11 years as editor and correspondent with the global news service Thomson Reuters, where she led a team of commodities reporters. McNeil has covered a wide array of issues ranging from the food and agribusiness industries, to the economy and politics. Her stories have been carried in newspapers and publications throughout the world.

An Illinois native, McNeil’s first reporting job was for a small agricultural news service in Champaign, Illinois. She says that from then on, she was hooked on the story of agriculture and the food industry.

“Agriculture is such a critical industry, and the significance of the organic sector is growing as consumers seek quality and safe products. I have long had a tremendous amount of respect for organic agriculture. Helping the Organic Trade Association to articulate and spread its important message is very meaningful for me, and I am truly excited to be joining such a first-class team,” said McNeil.

In this new position, McNeil will implement strategies to expand press coverage and visibility of OTA’s activities and events. She will work closely with OTA’s Communications team in handling day-to-day media relations, and also in developing stories and building relationships with key journalists and other media professionals to raise the profile of organic. She will be based in OTA’s D.C. office. 

The Organic Trade Association (OTA) is the membership-based business association for organic agriculture and products in North America. OTA is the leading voice for the organic trade in the United States, representing over 6,500 organic businesses across 49 states. Its members include growers, shippers, processors, certifiers, farmers' associations, distributors, importers, exporters, consultants, retailers and others. OTA’s Board of Directors is democratically elected by its members. OTA's mission is to promote and protect the growth of organic trade to benefit the environment, farmers, the public and the economy.