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The Gokey Family: A Legacy of Agriculture at SUNY Cobleskill

The ties between SUNY Cobleskill and the Gokey family run deep. Theirs is a family legacy spanning three generations, with the latest generation made up of six siblings all choosing to pursue agriculture education at their grandparents’ alma mater. Amy Gokey, graduating this year with a Bachelor of Technology in Agricultural Business Management, is the latest family member to carry on the tradition.

“The tradition began when my father, Steven, first attended in 1984,” said Amy. “He met my mom, Marsha Holmes, through his college roommate, and they ended up getting married and starting a dairy farm in 1992.”

From there, Steven and Marsha grew their farm and family, eventually having eight children. While all of the children worked on the farm, their parents encouraged them attend college and get a degree in their own area of interest.

“The children who liked the farm and wanted to pursue agriculture were familiar with SUNY Cobleskill through our dad, our maternal grandparents, and our involvement in 4H. Once our older siblings started attending, it definitely influenced the rest of us to attend as well.”

  • Andrew Gokey: Agricultural Engineering AAS, 2012
  • Adam Gokey: Agricultural Business Management BT, 2015
  • April Gokey: Dairy Production Management AAS, 2018 & Agricultural Business Management BT, 2019
  • Austin Gokey: Agricultural Business Management BT, 2021
  • Alex Gokey: Animal Science with a concentration in Dairy BT, 2023
  • Amy Gokey: Agricultural Business Management BT, 2023

 

The family’s Stargo Dairy Farm is a thriving farm today, also serving as a career foundation for many of the siblings. After graduating, Andrew returned to the farm and became the sow Feeder and shop mechanic. Adam worked at Monroe Tractor in Adams, NY, for a little while after graduating, then moved closer to home and started a career with Dairy Farmers of America as a field representative.

A jill-of-all-trades, April also returned to the farm after college and became the farm’s calf manager, along with handling human resources, public relations, marketing, and sales for the farm’s maple business, and a little bit of finance alongside Marsha.

Austin returned to the farm after college, working the fields and growing and maintaining the family’s maple business, “Marsha’s Maple House.” Alex took an internship for Rolling View Farms in Nunda, NY, before graduating in May of 2023. He accepted a two-year position working for that farm, with plans to return to the family dairy farm in a herdsman role and start in-house hoof trimming for our herd.

Amy completed her graduation credits in December of 2023 and is currently working part-time at Cornell Cooperative Extension as the Agricultural Education Specialist.

“I plan to implement Dairy in the Classroom within high schools in Franklin Count. I also work part-time at the family farm, where I clean the barn, milk cows, feed calves, and work in the shop. Someday, all of the siblings involved on the farm hope to take over from the parents and continue the farm into its second generation of ownership.”

The Gokey family values the hands-on experiences and lifelong connections forged during their time on campus. With aspirations for the future firmly in place, the Gokey family anticipates that the tradition of attending SUNY Cobleskill will endure, inspiring future generations to pursue their passions in agriculture and beyond.

“I am the youngest, so I’m used to being asked, ‘Is there anyone else after you?’ and giving the typical response of ‘Nope, I’m the baby and the last one…for now!'” said Amy.

 

 


 

Catching up with April Gokey:

 

 

 

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