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Farm Groups Praise Harsdorf Appointment as DATCP Secretary
Wisconsin Ag Connection - 11/13/2017

Gov. Walker's appointment of State Senator Sheila Harsdorf as the next secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection is being applauded by state farm organizations. The River Falls Republican, who begins her duties on Monday, has served in the state's 10th Senate District since 2001. She is also a former Assembly representative and has been part owner of her family's farm for many years.

Wisconsin Farm Bureau President Jim Holte said Harsdorf will be an 'outstanding advocate' for Wisconsin agriculture.

"Sheila understands the diversity and strength in the state's $88.3 billion agricultural economy," Holte said. "Wisconsin farmers are in good hands with Sheila at the helm of this important agency. She has served as a consistent voice for agriculture in her tenure in the legislature."

The WFBF further said in a statement that Harsdorf worked diligently with her colleagues on the state's right to farm and use value assessment of farmland laws during her time in Madison.

Meanwhile, the Dairy Business Association, which is based in De Pere, said Harsdorf's background in agriculture will serve her agency, farmers and all Wisconsin residents well.

"Harsdorf has demonstrated leadership on agricultural issues during her time in the Legislature and understands the challenges facing our dairy farmers and processors," the group said in a press release. "Her commitment to finding solutions, with input from those directly affected, will help keep our dairy state strong. We stand ready to be a collaborative partner with DATCP and other stakeholders who see the value of a successful dairy community and state."

Harsdorf becomes the first female ever to lead the agency. She is also the sister of Jim Harsdorf, who served as state agriculture secretary for three years under former Gov. Scott McCallum.

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