President-elect Joe Biden has officially nominated former Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack to serve in that position once again.
Vilsack served as head of USDA for eight years under the Obama administration. Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-Ohio) had expressed interest in running the nation’s agriculture department, but instead has been tapped to lead the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
“Vilsack is committed to ensuring the USDA promotes true equity and inclusion in every mission it has,” Biden said.
Plenty of agricultural organizations have offered their words of support for Vilsack returning to his previous position.
“The American Farm Bureau Federation welcomes the news that Tom Vilsack will be nominated to be Secretary of Agriculture. His leadership as the 30th Secretary of Agriculture and as Governor of a state reliant on agriculture is evidence of his qualification to serve in this role,” said AFBF President Zippy Duvall. “Tom Vilsack understands that the agriculture sector is far more complex than most people understand. He believes in a ‘big tent’ philosophy that supports all types of production and understands the importance of respecting farmers and ranchers as partners worthy of support in the race to achieve sustainability goals.”
“We congratulate Mr. Vilsack and are pleased that the Biden transition team has chosen such a steadfast champion of rural America to lead USDA,” said Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor. “After years of public and private service to the agriculture community, Vilsack is intimately familiar with the benefits biofuels present for reaching a net-zero carbon future and the economic vitality the industry provides to rural America.
“The National Corn Growers Association congratulates Secretary Vilsack on his nomination to lead USDA. In his eight years leading the Department during the Obama administration corn farmers appreciated his willingness to listen to the input from growers across the country and his steadfast commitment to agriculture, renewable fuels, our environment and USDA’s food and nutrition programs,” said NCGA President John Linder. “He’s been an outspoken advocate for rural America and we look forward to working together again, along with President-elect Biden, to build long-term demand for our product, mitigate the impact of climate change, seek new markets around the globe, and continue to feed and fuel the world.”
Julie Anna Potts, president and CEO of the North American Meat Institute, said, “Secretary Vilsack brings experience and leadership to the Department of Agriculture at a critical time when the meat and poultry industry works to put food on American’s tables and to keep the farm economy working in a pandemic. We look forward to working closely with Secretary Vilsack in his new role to ensure our industry remains a valuable partner to livestock producers, an efficient supplier to consumers and competitive in the international marketplace.”