MDC Homestead Campus to Host South Florida StrikeForce Workshops Sept. 30

Miami, Sep. 19, 2016 – Miami Dade College’s (MDC) Homestead Campus, in collaboration with the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights (OASCR), the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the Dade County Farm Bureau, and the Mexican American Council, will host South Florida StrikeForce Workshops, Friday, Sep. 30. The event is free and open to the public.

The Homestead Campus welcomes Dr. Joe Leonard, USDA Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, whose office is leading the StrikeForce workshops. This event marks his third visit to the MDC campus.  Leonard is the longest serving Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights in USDA’s history. Other USDA’s federal and state officials participating include:

  • Frederick Pfaeffle Arana, USDA Deputy Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights
  • Rick Dantzler, USDA State Executive Director, Farm Service Agency
  • Richard Machek, USDA State Director, Rural Development
  • Russell Morgan, USDA State Conservationist, Natural Resources Conservation Service
  • Jacqueline Davis-Slay, USDA StrikeForce, Director of Public and Private Partnerships

The goal of the workshops are to deliver multi-agency technical assistance to agricultural producers in South Dade County, including women and Hispanics about StrikeForce for Rural Growth and Opportunity Initiative and provide participants with an outlook of economic growth development in their community. According to USDA, more than 1,500 StrikeForce partnerships have helped USDA support nearly 190,000 projects and invest $23.5 billion in high-poverty areas in rural America.

Homestead has been identified as a high-poverty area with 38.2 percent of its residents living below the poverty level. Participating in StrikeForce has the potential to revitalize the Homestead agricultural sector and provide new job opportunities for its residents.

RSVP/pre-registration is required by Sept. 26.

For more information, please contact Jacqueline Davis-Slay at 202-690-2009 or

About USDA StrikeForce for Rural Growth and Opportunity

StrikeForce is part of the Obama Administration’s commitment to addressing persistent poverty in America. USDA identifies census tracts with more than 20 percent poverty and sub-county pockets of poverty. On January 15, 2016, Tom Vilsack, USDA Secretary of Agriculture announced the expansion of StrikeForce into high-poverty counties in Florida, Missouri, Montana, and Ohio.