Virginia has been honored because one of our finest, Dr. Jewel H. Bronaugh, VDACS Commissioner, has been nominated by President Biden to be Deputy Secretary of Agriculture.
In April 2018, Governor Ralph Northam appointed Dr. Jewel H. Bronaugh as the 16th Commissioner of the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Dr. Bronaugh most recently served as the Executive Director of the Center of Agriculture Research, Engagement and Outreach (CAREO) at Virginia State University. She previously served as the Virginia State Executive Director for the USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA), where she was appointed by Governor Terry McAuliffe and the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, Tom Vilsack, in July 2015. Dr. Bronaugh is the first African American female in the nation to serve in this capacity.
Prior to being appointed to FSA, she served as the Dean of the College of Agriculture at Virginia State University (VSU) for 5 years, where she led the strategic vision for the Extension and Research divisions and the academic departments. In her earlier career at VSU, she was the Associate Administrator of Cooperative Extension and a 4-H Youth Development Specialist, where she developed and delivered programs that addressed issues of bullying among youth.
In spring 2019, she launched the Farmer Stress Task Force, organized in partnership with agricultural and health related agencies and organizations, to raise awareness and coordinate resources to address farmer stress and mental health challenges in Virginia.