WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Sanford D. Bishop, Jr. (GA-02), member of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on the on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies, offered a testimony in favor of the nomination of USDA Deputy Secretary Nominee Krysta Harden at the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry. A picture of the Senate hearing and the text of Congressman Bishop’s testimony are below:
“Good morning Madame Chairwoman Stabenow, Senator Cochran, and members of the Committee.
“It is my distinct honor and privilege to come before you today, joined by the distinguished senior Senator from Georgia, and my good friend, Saxby Chambliss, to support the nomination of Krysta Harden, as the next Deputy Secretary of the United States Department of Agriculture.
“I have known Krysta, and her husband Charles, for decades and consider them dear friends. She is also happens to be my constituent, hailing from the largely rural Second Congressional District of Georgia, having been born and raised one of the many peanut farms in Mitchell County.
“Though she has served many years in Washington D.C., Krysta still refers to herself as a “Georgia farm girl!” I am proud to say she has never forgotten her roots and will bring a wealth of knowledge grown from her rustic upbringing as well as her many years of federal experience to her new position with USDA:
“I already mentioned that Krysta grew up and worked the land on a peanut farm.
“She has spent 16 years on Capitol Hill, including a stint as Staff Director for the House Agriculture Peanut and Tobacco Subcommittee.
“She also served for 6 years as CEO with the National Association of Conservation Districts, which represents the 3,000 districts tasked with carrying out natural resource management programs and—
“Most recently, she joined Secretary Tom Vilsack at USDA as the Assistant Secretary for Congressional Relations, ultimately being promoted in 2011 by the Secretary to the Department’s Chief of Staff.
“As a Member of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, I have had the privilege of personally working with her on a range of challenging and sensitive issues during her tenure in this Administration.
“I can say that I have found her bi-partisan and no-nonsense approach to problem-solving, her ability to listen, and her persistence and follow-through to be altogether refreshing and valuable.
“Whether working on national issues such as the reauthorization of the Farm Bill; or the Administration’s proposed reforms for the crop insurance and direct payments programs; or working with the Congressional Black Caucus on developing the legislative framework for farmer settlements; or assisting our office in helping a local farmer overcome a few challenges with his County FSA office, I have always found her to be honest, forthright, and fair.
“Finally, she has shown herself to represent the highest standards of public service.
“I have every confidence that she will perform admirably as the Deputy Secretary of USDA, and I wholeheartedly support her nomination for this important position.
“Thank you Madame Chairwoman and members of the Committee.”