Biden appoints political posts in rural Wisconsin

President Joe Biden on Thursday appointed two longtime Wisconsin rural experts to positions in the state offices of the US Department of Agriculture. Rural advocates across the state have applauded the nominations as victories for small farmers across the state.

Biden has appointed Eugene Schriefer, a senior outreach specialist at UW-Madison Extension, as the state of Wisconsin executive director for the Farm Service Agency. Schriefer will oversee and implement USDA policy in Wisconsin.

Schriefer has worked as an agricultural educator in Iowa County since 2009 and previously worked with Southwest Badger Resource Conservation and Development.

Darin Von Ruden, president of the Wisconsin Farmers Union, said Schriefer’s experience in the state over the past decade will be crucial.

“Over the past decade, Gene has made a significant contribution to the fabric of our farming community here in Wisconsin through his work with UW-Extension, Grazing Networks and Youth,” Von Ruden said in a statement. “His insights and connections across the state will prove invaluable to the Farm Service Agency.”

Biden also appointed former state lawmaker Julie Lassa as director of rural development for Wisconsin.

Lassa, who served in the Legislature for 18 years as a member of the Assembly and the Senate, also served on the board of directors of the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation and held positions in administration. local.

State directors of rural development head offices that provide grants and loans to stimulate economic development in their state.

Von Ruden said Lassa, from Portage County, will be a champion of small businesses and family farms.

“With her education on a dairy farm in central Wisconsin and training in civic engagement and economic development, particularly in promoting small businesses and local food, Julie brings a wealth of experience to the table,” said he declared. “I hope she can use her experiences to revitalize our communities and build a more resilient rural economy in the future.

In a declaration, the White House said these appointees would help rebuild communities affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and strengthen local economies.

“These regional appointments will be critical to the president’s efforts to rebuild the communities most affected by the pandemic, economic recovery and climate change,” he said. “They bring deep expertise in their areas of intervention as well as critical relationships with federal, state, tribal and local leaders. And, in keeping with the president’s commitment to building an administration that resembles America, these regional appointees represent the diversity of America and the communities they serve.

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