Ellen was born and raised on a dairy farm outside Rochester, Minnesota. She was the oldest of five children. Her family still lives in the Rochester area and her youngest brother is the 4th generation on the family farm. Ellen’s love of gardening, cooking, and baking is her connection to her childhood.
Ellen was very active in 4-H and attended the National Leadership Conference in Washington, D.C. She attended Stout State University in Menomonie, Wisconsin. Stout is now part of the University of Wisconsin system. Her goal was to become a County Extension agent but changed her major to B.S. Home Economics in Business.
Upon graduation, she decided if she was ever going to see the country, now was the time and her first job was in Washington D,C, at the National Canners Association. Her career spanned 41 years working in the food industry for Hanover Foods, M&M/Mars and McCormick and Co., Inc.
She retired in 2013.
Her first contact with the Horn Farm Center was as a volunteer for the last Tomato Fest. Ellen’s passion is the Squirrel Tail Oven and is working alongside Gary Jones to learn how to bake in the oven. She is also a member of the Community Education Work Group and was chair of this group for the last two years.
Her plan was to return to Minnesota in 1978 but she married a wonderful young man from Pennsylvania and has lived here ever since. Since retirement, she has made two road trips to spend a month visiting with her family in Minnesota. She has two children, Abegale and Jason. Jason and his wife Angelica have a beautiful daughter, Elaina. She provides Ellen with many grandmother memories. Abby has a French bulldog named Suzette who is a frequent visitor to the Horn Farm Center.