The Colorado Department of Agriculture has a new deputy commissioner named to the post by Ag Commissioner Kate Greenberg. Steve Silverman will assume the new role on April 22.
TAKING THE JOB: Steve Silverman will oversee daily operations for the Colorado Department of Agriculture in his new role. He has experience both in Colorado and in Washington, D.C. (Courtesy of Colorado Department of Agriculture)
In commenting on the appointment, Greenberg noted that the role of the deputy commissioner is to oversee day-to-day operations of the department and help ensure the department provides “excellent service to Colorado’s farmers and ranchers.”
Greenberg pointed to Silverman’s time serving agriculture in Colorado in his role at USDA, and his experience in Washington, D.C., as assets for CDA. “His time serving agriculture here in Colorado, as well as in D.C., is a combination that will enable us to not only better serve producers across the state, but to also grow our leadership at the national level,” she added.
Silverman comes to CDA after more than three decades in public service, including 20 years supporting farmers and ranchers as a senior official at USDA. Most recently, he was director of USDA’s National Appeals Division, where he oversaw a nationwide staff of professional adjudicators who resolve program disputes on behalf of farmers and ranchers in Colorado and across the United States. As NAD director, Silverman supervised a headquarters office in Alexandria, Va., and three regional offices — including one in Lakewood, Colo.
Prior to his work at NAD, Silverman served as deputy assistant attorney in the Environment and Natural Resources Division of the U.S. Department of Justice. Silverman also served as principle deputy general counsel at USDA in Washington, D.C., where he supervised operations of USDA’s Office of General Counsel and oversaw a rich portfolio of legal and policy matters, involving nearly all of USDA’s ag and rural development programs.
Silverman also served as the acting general counsel of USDA, where he led efforts to resolve several high-profile class action civil rights lawsuits that had challenged USDA for several decades. Prior to serving as acting general counsel, Silverman served in Colorado as the regional attorney of USDA’s Mountain Region and was based in Lakewood.
In the statement announcing his appointment, Silverman said the majority of his career has been spent in service to communities of farmers and ranchers in the state and across the nation. “I’m looking forward to working closely with Commissioner Greenberg and the administration to help support our next generation on the land, scale up market opportunities and promote farmer-led stewardship,” he said.
The principal responsibilities of the deputy commissioner include coordinating policy development and implementation, overseeing the management of the department’s divisions, and assisting the commissioner in achieving department goals.