Maryland Farm & Harvest
Meet the Team
Joanne Clendining, Host

joanne.jpg Joanne could be described as a natural to host Maryland Farm & Harvest. A veteran actress with numerous credits to her name, Clendining has also spent years running a farm and is just as comfortable driving a tractor or forklift as she is when the director says, “Action.”

This is not the first time in her career that Clendining has married her off-camera pursuits with the on-stage career. Her experience as a physical therapist translated into appearances in corporate films and advertising for Quest Diagnostics, GlaxoSmithKline, Horizon BlueCross BlueShield of New Jersey, and Shire, a pharmaceutical company. Other commercial and corporate appearances include spots for Costco Wholesale, Insight Communications, KPMG, and PrimoHoagies. She has also had roles in several feature films and shorts.

Her varied interests include volleyball, country line and ballroom dancing, golf, and weight training. When not in front of the camera, Joanne is frequently behind the microphone singing and playing guitar in her band.

In 2014, Joanne earned an Emmy® Award from the National Capital Chesapeake Bay Chapter of the National Television Academy of Arts and Sciences in the “Program Host/Moderator” category of the annual competition for her work on Maryland Farm & Harvest.

Sarah Sampson, Series Producer

sarah.jpg In June 2014, Sarah Sampson was named series producer for Maryland Farm & Harvest and will direct the production for its second season starting in November 2014.

A graduate of the Philip Merrill College of Journalism at University of Maryland, College Park, Ms. Sampson has worked as an award-winning news reporter in Maryland and New York prior to joining MPT.

While still in school, Ms. Sampson was a freelance reporter in The (Baltimore) Sun’s Harford County Bureau and worked an associate producer/assignment editor at WBAL-TV. Following graduation, she served as a reporter and weekend anchor at WHAG-TV in Hagerstown where, among other activities, she contributed stories on the Maryland General Assembly. She left Maryland for two years to be a reporter and producer at WGRZ-TV in Buffalo, New York, before returning as a freelance reporter for WBAL-TV. She is also an adjunct instructor at Hood College, teaching broadcast reporting and writing.

Along the way, Ms. Sampson was singled out for recognition by the New York State Associated Press Broadcasters Award for her work on a feature story for WGRZ-TV and was nominated by the Buffalo Broadcasters Association for its rising star award in 2011. As part of the WGRZ-TV team in Buffalo, she earned a national Edward R. Murrow Award for overall excellence.

Al Spoler, Contributing Editor

al.jpg Al has spent nearly 40 years in public broadcasting, working extensively in television and radio. A former producer/director at MPT, he also has been the co-host of WYPR-FM’s “Cellar Notes” and “Radio Kitchen” programs. By virtue of these programs, he developed a keen interest in locally produced food and wine. In 2010 he examined the “eat local” movement in The Maryland Harvest, a documentary about Free State farmers and the support they receive from topflight restaurants. A frequent visitor to Baltimore’s farmers markets, Mr. Spoler has built up close relationships with farmers all over the state. In addition to The Maryland Harvest, he produced and hosted Chesapeake Wine Country and Brewed on the Bay for MPT. He also has produced numerous stories for MPT’s flagship program Outdoors Maryland. An avid supporter of Maryland wines, he is the director of the Maryland Governor’s Cup Wine Competition.

Tom Wach, Segment Producer

tom.jpg Tom brings local knowledge and diverse production experience to Maryland Farm & Harvest, which gives him the opportunity to pursue his passions of getting to know the people he covers and bringing their stories to light. A Baltimore native, Wach was an intern at Maryland Public Television while still pursuing a degree at McDaniel College before moving on to the Discovery Channel and WBOC-TV in Salisbury, Maryland.

Wach also worked as a photographer, covering Maryland and Delaware politics, farming and agriculture stories, and breaking news. He is one of the few photographers to shoot and broadcast live reports of Hurricanes Irene and Sandy straight from the Delmarva beaches.

He enjoys spending his free time with his family including his wife, Shannon, and new daughter, Sydney. He loves the outdoors and continues to enjoy hiking, biking, canoeing, and fishing throughout Maryland.

Stefanie Robey, Segment Producer

stefanie.jpg Stefanie first developed a love for nonfiction content as a longtime volunteer with the then-named Silverdocs documentary festival (now AFI DOCS) in her hometown of Silver Spring, Maryland. She began to pursue documentary storytelling professionally while a student at the University of Chicago, working as a videographer/editor with the Chicago Multimedia Initiatives Group; as post-production assistant with AnswersMedia; and as intern with CNN’s long-form documentary unit. She has also worked on a number of feature-length documentary projects, including Count Me In, a film about participatory budgeting initiatives in Chicago, and Freedom House, the story of the origins of emergency medicine in Pittsburgh. In 2012, she was awarded the university’s Seidel Scholars PRISM Grant and spent three months in India filming three 20-something Americans in their efforts to launch a burrito chain in Bangalore. After graduating in 2013 with a bachelor’s degree in anthropology, she freelanced in video production in the Washington, D.C. area before joining the team at Maryland Farm & Harvest.

Michael Orsborn, Videographer

michael.jpg Hailing from Ohio, Michael began his career working for WOUB, the PBS station in Athens, Ohio, during his undergraduate years at Ohio University. After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in video production and an associate degree in applied sciences in electronic media, he left Ohio to pursue a career in television news. He worked in North Carolina, Virginia and most recently at WBFF Fox45 in Baltimore before joining Maryland Public Television. Michael’s most memorable news stories were flying aboard the B-17 Memphis Belle; joining the sailors of the USS Bataan on maneuvers; and covering the aftermath of Tropical Storm Nicole in North Carolina.

In his spare time, Michael enjoys jamming to his favorite music, adding to his movie library, swimming, and enjoying craft beers.

Tanya Spann Roche, Editor

tanya.jpg Tanya is an award-winning non-linear editor, writer and producer with more than 20 years’ experience in film and video production. After working in post-production at Nickelodeon Studios in Florida and running the U.S. Department of Justice Multimedia Section, she is now co-owner of Think Speak Act, LLC, a “green” video production company. In 2004, Ms. Roche produced and edited the award-winning documentary Your Right To Lose, and she regularly edits for PBS shows, including the Emmy®-nominated My Generation, as well as for Life Reimagined with Jane Pauley on the Today Show. She holds a bachelor’s degree in film theory from the University of Florida and earned an MFA degree in film and video production from Florida State University. Her work has been honored with Telly and CINE awards, as well as Communicator awards and TIVA-DC Peer awards (the premier film, video and media competition for the DCarea production community). Ms. Roche has served as adjunct faculty at both American University and the George Washington University Documentary Center, and she also teaches in her own editing workshops.