USDA Announces Key Staff Appointments

The Department of Agriculture last week announced the names of individuals who will hold senior positions in Washington, D.C.

Karama Neal was named Administrator for the Rural Business-Cooperative Service. Most recently, Neal served as president of Southern Bancorp Community Partners.

Mike Schmidt was named senior advisor in the Office of the Secretary. Previously, Schmidt served as senior advisor for USDA’s Farm Production and Conservation Mission Area since January 20, 2021. 

Lisa Ramirez was named Director of the Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement. She most recently served as the Chief Innovative Officer for the Lubbock Independent School District in Lubbock, TX.

Doug McKalip was named senior advisor in the Office of the Secretary. Most recently, McKalip was a senior advisor for the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said they will “play an integral role in our mission to create a department that represents and serves all Americans, addresses the climate crisis, builds new and fair markets for American producers, and rebuilds rural America.”

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