United States Deputy Secretary of Agriculture

The United States Deputy Secretary of Agriculture is the second-highest-ranking official in the United States Department of Agriculture, appointed by the President with the advice and consent of the Senate.[1] The Deputy Secretary becomes Acting Secretary of Agriculture in the event of the Secretary's resignation, death, or otherwise inability to fulfill the duties of the position. The Deputy Secretary performs whatever duties are prescribed to him or her by the Secretary of Agriculture.[2] The Deputy Secretary of Agriculture is paid at level II of the Executive Schedule,[3] meaning he or she receives a basic salary of $177,000 annually.[4]

The position of Deputy Secretary of Agriculture was originally called the Under Secretary of Agriculture, until the title was changed in 1976.[5] Previous Deputy Secretaries by recency include Chuck Conner (September 2005 - January 2009),[6] Jim Moseley (August 2001 – April 2005),[7] Richard Rominger (May 1993 – January 2001),[8] Ann Veneman (1991–1993),[9] and Jack Parnell (1989–1991).[10] On July 13, 2017, President Donald Trump announced his intent to nominate Stephen Censky, the CEO of the American Soybean Association, as deputy secretary. Censky was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on October 3, 2017.

List of Deputy Secretaries of Agriculture

     denotes Acting Deputy Secretary


  Democratic (5)   Republican (5)

No. Portrait Name State of Residence Took Office Left Office President(s)
1 John Coyle White Texas 1977 1978 Jimmy Carter
2 Jim Williams Florida 1979 1981
3 Richard Edmund Lyng 1981 1985 Ronald Reagan[11]
4 John R. Norton III Arizona 1985 1986
5 Peter C. Myers Missouri 1986 1989
6 Jack Parnell 1989 1991 George H. W. Bush
7 Ann Veneman California 1991 1993
8 Richard Rominger California May 1993 January 2001 Bill Clinton
9 Jim Moseley August 2001 April 2005 George W. Bush
10 Charles F. Conner Indiana September 2005 January 2009
11 Kathleen Merrigan Massachusetts April 8, 2009 March 14, 2013 Barack Obama
12 Krysta Harden Georgia July 23, 2013 February 29, 2016
Michael Scuse Delaware March 2016 January 20, 2017
Michael Young January 20, 2017 October 9, 2017 Donald Trump
13 Stephen Censky Missouri October 11, 2017 Incumbent


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