Biden picks former VSU Dean of Agriculture for key Cabinet role

Virginia News
Dr. Jewel B (1)

President-elect Joe Biden nominates former VSU Dean of Agriculture to Cabinet position. (Photo: VSU)

ETTRICK, Va. (WRIC) — Dr. Jewel Bronaugh, former dean of the College of Agriculture at Virginia State University, has been nominated to serve as the new Deputy Secretary of the US Department of Agriculture (USDA). 

Dr. Bronaugh is one of five women nominated today by the Biden Administration to serve in the number two spot as Deputy Secretary at key Cabinet agencies.

“As President of Virginia State University and Chair of the Council of 1890 Presidents, I am exceedingly pleased and excited about this announcement,” Dr. Makola M. Abdullah said. “Dr. Bronaugh brings an unparalleled skill set and an abundance of knowledge to this critical position. She knows agriculture, the 1890s Land Grant system and understands the importance of our mission. We look forward to supporting her and working with her to meet the challenges and opportunities of the 21st century.”

Dr. Bronaugh began her career at VSU in 2001. She served as Dean of VSU’s College of Agriculture for 5 years and as the Associate Administrator of Cooperative Extension. She also served as State Executive Director of the USDA Farm Service Agency.

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam commended Biden’s decision.

“As Commissioner of VDACS, Dr. Bronaugh has been a true leader—promoting the agency’s core mission while taking on new challenges, including our COVID-19 pandemic response and farmer mental health, focusing economic development to improve food access in underserved communities, and engaging youth in the field of agriculture,” Governor Northam said. “I am proud that she will be representing the both the Commonwealth and all Americans in such a critical role at USDA and in this new Administration.”

The United States Deputy Secretary of Agriculture is the second-highest-ranking official in the USDA.

All nominees must be confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

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