Oregon Agriculture Director: On Wednesday, the U.S. Senate confirmed the former head of the Oregon Department of Agriculture to lead the USDA’s international trade efforts. In May, President Joe Biden chose Alexis Taylor to serve as Undersecretary of Trade and Foreign Agriculture Affairs. Since Biden took office, the position has been unfilled.
Former Oregon Agriculture Director Awarded USDA Foreign Trade Directorship
In this new role, Taylor will be responsible for expanding markets abroad for American agricultural products and fostering trade prospects for farmers. Taylor assured the Senate that she would defend those in nations where access to food was scarce before Wednesday’s vote.
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USDA‘s efforts in capacity development and food security will be even more important in assisting the globe in navigating a growing food security problem in the wake of the diplomatic and humanitarian crisis unfolding in Ukraine. She emphasized the importance of the United States’ involvement in the fight against food insecurity and the effort to safeguard society’s most defenseless.
Lauren Henderson Will Be Acting Director
Oregon Department of Agriculture spokeswoman Andrea Cantu-Schomus confirmed that Taylors’ previous deputy, Lauren Henderson, had been named acting director. Henderson has been employed by the Oregon Department of Agriculture for 22 years, according to the woman herself.
According to a press release issued by the governor’s office in 2016, Governor Kate Brown selected Taylor for the position in part to assist Oregon farmers in expanding their export markets internationally.
Former director of @ORagriculture Alexis Taylor was confirmed by the U.S. Senate today to oversee foreign trade for the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Her former deputy director will lead Oregon's agency until a new head is appointed. https://t.co/1Xf8iYXt2X
— Oregon Capital Chronicle (@ORCapChronicle) December 22, 2022
Taylor formerly served for 12 years in the USDA’s agricultural and foreign agriculture branch, and before that, she worked for Montana and Iowa representatives in the U.S. House of Representatives. According to a statement released by the office of Republican U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa, Taylor was raised on a farm near Holy Cross and earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from Iowa State University.
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It stated that she had joined the U.S. Army Reserves during her senior year of high school and that she had completed one tour of duty in Iraq during her junior year of college. Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) testified at Taylor’s confirmation hearing that he had known members of Taylor’s family for more than 50 years, including her sister, who had served as a legislative aide for him, and his cousin, who was one of his political strategists.
I’ve known Alexis for a long time and respect her greatly,” he remarked.
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