South Dakota Ag Secretary Vanneman to retire
Kim Vanneman, Secretary of the South Dakota Department of Agriculture, is retiring as of Friday, May 8th. Secretary Vanneman has always advocated for agriculture, said Governor Kristi Noem, making sure there’s a place for the next generation of farmers.
“That is really where her heart is,” Noem told reporters Tuesday, “is to make sure that the next generation has the opportunity to be on the land and continue to provide for this nation’s food supply.”
Lieutenant Governor Larry Rhoden will step in as Interim Secretary of Agriculture. Rhoden says he looks forward to representing South Dakota agriculture.
“Being raised on a farm and ranch, born and raised in western South Dakota and working in agriculture my entire life, serving on the Ag Committee and chairing the Ag Committee in the legislature for a couple of years,” said Rhoden, “what an opportunity to get to represent South Dakota’s number one industry.”
Prior to her time as Secretary of Agriculture, Vanneman served as a director for Farm Credit Services of America, Farm Credit Council, Farm Credit Foundations, and FCC Services. She was a member of the State House of Representatives from 2007-2013, serving on the Agriculture and Natural Resources committee all six years. She and her husband, Clint, own and operate Vanneman Farms north of Winner.
“I want to thank Governor Noem for the opportunity to serve as South Dakota Secretary of Agriculture. It has been an honor to work with the producers and agricultural organizations promoting, protecting, and preserving South Dakota agriculture,” said Secretary Vanneman. “The remote work model the past several weeks has made me aware of what I am missing out on with my family and operating our family farm. It’s spring—a time of new beginnings. It is time for me to spend more time home with family and focus on our 111-year-old family farm.”
“Lieutenant Governor Rhoden has been instrumental in helping South Dakota’s producers handle the fallout from the Smithfield situation,” said Governor Noem. “He’s well-prepared to step into this role. I know he’ll serve as the strong leader our agriculture industry needs right now.”