Tom Vilsack, Secretary of Agriculture

Tom Vilsack

Secretary of Agriculture

Thomas James Vilsack was born in December 1950 in a Roman Catholic orphanage in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He was adopted early the next year. He earned an undergraduate degree from Hamilton College and a Juris Doctor from Albany Law School.

He served six years as the Mayor of Mount Pleasant, Iowa, then six more years as a member of the Iowa Senate. For the following eight years, he served as the governor of Iowa.

Vilsack was nominated by President Barack Obama to be the Secretary of Agriculture. He was confirmed by the unanimous consent of the Senate and assumed office in January 2009. After his full-term tenure expired, he became president and CEO of the U.S. Dairy Export Council.

He was nominated by President Joe Biden to be Secretary of Agriculture and was confirmed by the Senate. He assumed office in February 2021.

Vilsack is married to Ann Christine “Christie” Bell, and they have two sons.

In the News…

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced $1.3 billion in funding, under the Inflation Reduction Act, for 385 projects that will go to communities in all 50 states for use in planting and maintaining trees. Tree planting efforts will be focused on marginalized areas, and will include all states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and tribal nations. 

Secretary Vilsack said, “We believe we can create more resilient communities in terms of the impact of climate. We think we can mitigate extreme heat incidents and events in many of the cities.” 

Brenda Mallory, chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality, said, “Everyone should have access to nature. Urban forests can really play a key role in ensuring both that access but also increasing the climate resilience of communities, helping reduce extreme heat, and making communities more livable.” 

Contact this Leader…

Did you pray for Secretary Vilsack today? You can let him know at:

The Honorable Tom Vilsack, Secretary
U.S. Department of Agriculture
1280 Maryland Ave SW
Washington, DC 20250


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