Nicole Foti
Fashion Design and Merchandising, Ulster BOCES Career & Technical Center

Nicole Foti teaches the Fashion Design and Merchandising program at Ulster BOCES Career and Technical Center in Port Ewen, NY. The fashion program aims to help high school students in Ulster County explore a variety of career opportunities within the fashion industry, while engaging students in meaningful projects that collaborate with local businesses and communities. In this two-year course, students build their portfolios, preparing them to pursue college or related employment after graduation.Nicole’s background in the fashion industry focuses on womenswear woven and cut-and-sew design, with further experience in knitwear, menswear, CAD design, fabric research and development, and merchandising. In addition to her freelance experience, Nicole has worked at companies including Kenneth Cole, Donna Karan, LF USA, and Rebecca Taylor. She is the recipient of the 2019 Agricultural Literacy Grant from the New York Agriculture in the Classroom program.

Robin Guy
Birch Hollow Fibers

Diane Kennedy
Twilight Song Farm
Buskirk, NY

Diane Kennedy of Buskirk, NY works for a trade association in Albany. She also owns Twilight Song Farm, where she raises Merino/Cormo and Leicester Longwool sheep.

Cydney Cornell
Greene County Wool

Cydney, owner of Greene County Wool, is based in East Durham, NY at the foot of the Catskills Mountains on a 122 acre 200 year old farm.  There she tends to her flock of registered CVM/Romeldale sheep which she coats yearlong and then markets those fleeces to fiber artists. Cydney enjoyed a 30 plus year career as a successful freelance hairdresser based out of NY and Los Angeles specializing in creating wigs and character hairstyles for film. 5 years ago she began transitioning to her upstate NY dream life. Creativity and hard work define her no matter what business she delves into.  Cydney loves caring for her expanding fiber flock and making unique items from her own sheep’s fiber to sell at local markets and festivals where she finds meeting other creative people inspiring. She is proud to be raising the special breed of heritage sheep -the CVM- and is a member of The Livestock Conservancy which sponsors the popular Shave em to Save Em program.

Nicole Milano
Knitwear Designer

Jeffrey Silberman
Maple Shade Farm &
Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT)

Jeffrey Silberman’s experience includes many years as a professor at Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) in New York City, and served five successive terms as chairperson of the Textile Development and Marketing Department of the Jay and Patty Baker School of Business and Technology. He retired in January 2020. He is the co-owner of Maple Shade Farm in Katonah, New York, that produces natural fibers and dyes for academic research.   

Prof. Silberman is an international textile consultant specializing in natural fiber program development and demand enhancement strategy. From 2001-2016, he simultaneously served as consultant to the International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC) Secretariat and as Executive Director to the International Forum for Cotton Promotion (IFCP). He has designed and implemented related development programs in more than fifteen countries, including Turkey, India, Armenia and Nepal; linen development programs throughout Russia, including the Vologda, Kaluga, Kostroma, and Yaroslavl oblasts; cashmere identity for the Mongolian Cashmere FibreMark Society in Ulaanbaatar. Prof. Silberman was a core member of the team that developed and launched the Egyptian Cotton Logo and Promotion Program (CottonEgypt) for the Government of Egypt. 

He is a winner of the Winrock Award for Service and Dedication for his work with Russian flax producers.

Cecelia Tkaczyk
Cece’s Wool
Guilderland, NY