SNA Announces Process for Nominating USDA Political Appointees


President-elect Joe Biden is currently appointing individuals to high-level positions at various departments and agencies – including the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

During past Administrations, SNA has participated in this process by suggesting names for consideration for some of these positions. As the Biden Administration develops, SNA will again be putting forth names for consideration. An opportunity now exists for you to play a role in this very important process.

In November, the SNA Board of Directors voted to create an Ad Hoc Committee to identify, select, and nominate individuals for consideration by President-elect Biden as appointees to USDA. The Ad Hoc Committee consists of SNA President Reginald Ross, SNA President-elect Beth Wallace, SNA Vice President Lori Adkins, SNA PPL Chair Scott Clements, SNA Industry Representative Sean Leer, SNA Past President Becky Domokos-Bays (2016-2017), SNA CEO Patricia Montague and SNA Staff Vice President of Government Affairs and Media Relations Cathy Schuchart. This Committee will be making nominations for 4 high-level positions within the USDA. Those positions are Under Secretary, Deputy Under Secretary, FNS Administrator and FNS Associate Administrator.

Starting in early December, the Ad Hoc Committee will begin the selection process. The Committee is charged with four tasks:

  • Identifying candidates
  • Determining their interest (if interested, a form would be completed and then evaluated for merit)
  • Selecting candidates
  • Issuing either a letter of endorsement (SNA members) or a letter of support (non-members).

The Committee is soliciting suggestions for potential nominees. Interested candidates will be evaluated on the following criteria:

  • Administrative/Operations (financial management experience)
  • Leadership (proven coalition building skills)
  • Academic (preferred Masters; ideal Doctorate)
  • Public Policy (campaign involvement/political savvy)
  • Nutrition (experience with other nutrition programs beyond school setting).

If you know of someone who is interested in any of these positions, please encourage them to send their application and resume to Cathy Schuchart, Staff Vice President, Government Affairs and Media Relations at

Since this is a quickly moving process, all suggestions need to be received by December 4, 2020. The Ad Hoc Committee will then submit the names of the SNA-endorsed candidate(s) to the White House Transition Team for consideration.

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