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News Release

Release No. 0273.09
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Office of Communications (202) 720-4623

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OBAMA ADMINISTRATION CONTINUES NAMING STATE DIRECTORS FOR RURAL DEVELOPMENT

WASHINGTON, June 30, 2009 - The Obama Administration today continued naming individuals who will serve as State Director for Rural Development at the USDA.

"These individuals will be important advocates on behalf of rural communities in states throughout the country and help administer the valuable programs and services provided by the USDA that can enhance their economic success," said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.

COLORADO

Jim Isgar: Isgar is currently a Colorado State Senator and chairs the Agriculture and Natural Resources committee. He served as President of the Board of Agriculture for the State of Colorado and has policy experience on energy, healthcare, water research and rural economic issues. Isgar has worked on water conservancy efforts for Colorado and is currently a member of several local boards that focus on the issue. Since 1976, he has managed his family farm with his son.

IDAHO

Wallace Hendrick: Hendrick most recently was the General Manager for Esco Supply and established retail stores across six western states. He started a natural resource marketing and management firm, Resources Northwest, Inc., that successfully coordinated with government and private organizations on issues of economic development. Hendrick served as the first Executive Director of the Idaho Lottery and launched it into a profitable organization. He is a third generation resident of rural Idaho and holds leadership roles on education boards in his community. Hendrick received a B.S. in resource management from the University of Nevada-Reno, and has a master's degree in marketing and management from the University of Northern Colorado.

KANSAS

Patricia Clark: Clark is the Director of Operations for the Kansas Leadership Center in Wichita, Kan. Prior to that, she worked with the Kansas Department of Commerce on the agency's rural programs and also served as the Director of the Public Policy Division at the Kansas Farm Bureau. Clark was honored as an Outstanding Young Alumnus by Kansas State University and is the founding member of the Kansas Ag and Rural Leadership Program. She holds a bachelor's degree in agriculture from Kansas State University.

USDA's Rural Development administers and manages over 40 housing, business, and community infrastructure and facility programs as laid out by Congress through a network of 6,100 employees located in 500 national, state and local offices. These programs are designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural America. Rural Development has an existing portfolio of over $114 billion in loans and loan guarantees.

The USDA provides leadership on food, agriculture and natural resources and touches the life of every American. Reflecting President Obama's commitment to expanding economic opportunities in rural America, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and the USDA are working to enhance availability of broadband, promote the development of renewable energy, to conserve, maintain and improve our natural resources and environment, and promote a sustainable, safe, sufficient and nutritious food supply.