On Friday, President Joe Biden announced that he is nominating Alexis Taylor as the Undersecretary for Trade and U.S. Agricultural Affairs at USDA. Taylor is currently the director of the Oregon Department of Agriculture. Taylor has also served on Capitol Hill as a ag policy expert and managed USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Services. Multiple farm groups came out in support of the nomination of Taylor to the undersecretary position at USDA. Read those reactions below:
Statement by Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on the Intent to Nominate Alexis Taylor to Serve as Under Secretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs
WASHINGTON, May 13, 2022 – “Alexis Taylor has dedicated her life to public service. She has not only spent her career serving the American people through her work in U.S. agricultural and trade policy, but also as a Veteran of the U.S. Army. Her nomination builds upon USDA’s commitment to link U.S. agriculture to the world to enhance export opportunities for American farmers and producers and increase global food security. Alexis currently serves as the Director of the Oregon Department of Agriculture, a position she was appointed to in December 2016 by Governor Kate Brown, where she oversees policy directives for Oregon’s 38 programs and its 500 employees. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and minor in Communications from Iowa State University.
Alexis is a collaborative leader with a track record of working towards large-scale solutions in partnership with the communities she serves. This spirit and approach position her uniquely for this role and will ensure cohesiveness between USDA and the Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs team. I am confident Alexis is the right person to lead as we continue to address global food security, promote American exports across the globe and strengthen trade relationships with our global partners.”
President Biden announced today that he is appointing Alexis Taylor as undersecretary for trade and U.S. agricultural affairs at the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Taylor, currently the director of the Oregon Department of Agriculture, has extensive experience working on agricultural issues.
“I have known Alexis in a professional capacity for well over a decade, and she is someone with a deep understanding of agriculture, particularly as it relates to foreign markets, and she is widely respected by policymakers on both sides of the aisle,” said Brooke S. Appleton, vice president of public policy at the National Corn Growers Association. “I cannot think of a better person to represent the Biden administration on this issue.”
Taylor has served as a policy expert on ag issues for several members of Congress on Capitol Hill and managed the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services. An Iraq veteran, Taylor grew up in Iowa on her family’s 160-year-old farm.
Taylor’s nomination will now go before the Senate for final confirmation.
NASDA celebrates Director Alexis Taylor’s nomination to USDA Under Secretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs
ARLINGTON, VA — The National Association of State Departments of Agriculture congratulates Oregon Department of Agriculture Director Alexis Taylor on her nomination to U.S. Department of Agriculture Under Secretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs.
“I’ve known Alexis from her previous time served at USDA and more recently as she served as a NASDA member from Oregon. From these experiences, I offer my enthusiastic endorsement for her candidacy. We know Director Taylor’s passion for seeking market opportunities for American farmers, ranchers and food producers of all types. Her previous experience at USDA, her character and her deep understanding of how regulations across the globe matter for individuals in our communities will benefit all Americans,” said NASDA CEO Ted McKinney.
“I’m honored to congratulate my friend and colleague, Alexis Taylor, on her nomination as USDA Under Secretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs. It’s great to see a fellow member of NASDA take on this opportunity, and I know that her tremendous talent, experience, and knowledge of agriculture make Ms. Taylor well suited to thrive in this role and lead us forward in developing new trade markets for America’s farmers and ranchers. I fully support her nomination and ask the Senate to expedite her confirmation,” said NASDA President, New York Commissioner of Agriculture Richard A. Ball.
Director Taylor served on the 2020-2021 NASDA Board of Directors sharpening states’ impact on federal agricultural policy. Taylor also served on the NASDA Foundation Board from 2018-2022, developing and discovering new resources for state agriculture departments to better serve constituents.
In an interview shortly after Taylor was appointed to Director for the Oregon Department of Agriculture, NASDA asked her, “In seven words or less, what is some advice you would offer your fellow agriculturalists?”
Taylor responded, “Challenge yourself and others to think differently.”
“We know, as she has for Oregon, Director Taylor will continue to press U.S. agriculture to reach new heights and embrace new opportunities,” McKinney said.
Taylor helped pioneer the development of the NASDA Foundation Women’s Farm2Food Accelerator program, enabling budding women food and beverage entrepreneurs to reach new markets for their products. Participants receive training in marketing, product development, food safety, food packaging and more. Oregon hosted one of the original pilot programs for the Women’s Farm2Food Accelerator. Now, the program is administered by multiple states across the U.S., training 50 women each year.
Dairy Groups Endorse Alexis Taylor Nomination as USDA’s Top Trade Official
IDFA Welcomes the Nomination of USDA Undersecretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs Alexis Taylor, Urges Confirmation
WASHINGTON, May 13, 2022—Michael Dykes, D.V.M., president and CEO of the International Dairy Foods Association, released the following statement today in support of the nomination of Alexis Taylor, a veteran of Capitol Hill, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the United States Army, for the long-vacant role of Under Secretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs at USDA:
“IDFA is very encouraged to see Alexis Taylor nominated for Under Secretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs at USDA. Ms. Taylor’s depth of experience in trade issues in previous, senior roles at the Department and presently with the Oregon Department of Agriculture, along with her longstanding commitment to advancing agricultural policy and U.S. exports, make her an ideal nominee for the position. She has been a strong supporter of the U.S. dairy industry and we are confident that, should she be confirmed, Ms. Taylor will continue to advance market opportunities for U.S. dairy around the world. We strongly urge the U.S. Senate to expedite a hearing to advance her nomination.
“Along with many agricultural sectors, IDFA’s trade priorities have moved slowly without the presence of either a Chief Agricultural Negotiator at the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative or this position at USDA being filled. With Ms. Taylor’s nomination, IDFA looks to her leadership for resolving ongoing problems with the implementation of the U.S./EU dairy certificate, advancing a strategic outcome of the USMCA dispute on Canadian dairy tariff-rate quota administration, resolving long-term outstanding issues with Indonesia’s facility registration process, and growing market opportunities for U.S. dairy, among others.
“IDFA congratulates Alexis Taylor on her nomination and will be working with key congressional offices to urge her swift confirmation so that the dairy industry may have a stronger voice in trade policy decisions impacting our global competitiveness.”
WASHINGTON, DC — House Agriculture Committee Republican Leader Glenn “GT” Thompson issued the following statement regarding President Biden’s nomination of Alexis Taylor to serve as the Under Secretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of Agriculture:
“While I would have preferred to see this nomination much sooner, I am pleased President Biden has selected Alexis Taylor to serve as the Under Secretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs. This position is immensely helpful to our producers, will expand market access and trade promotion opportunities, and can assist the Administration in navigating the unyielding global supply chain crisis. Today’s announcement is one step of many needed to demonstrate this Administration prioritizes trade. I urge the Senate to move expeditiously with the confirmation process and look forward to working with Ms. Taylor.”