Updated with full Senate confirmation.
The full Senate on Oct. 3 confirmed Steve Censky, nominated by President Trump as Deputy USDA Secretary, and Ted McKinney, nominated to be Under Secretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs, on a voice vote.
“I commend the Senate for confirming these two experienced, prepared, and capable nominees, who will provide the steady leadership we need at USDA," said USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue. "Steve Censky will help us be responsive to producers reeling from the effects of multiple hurricanes and also offer prudent counsel as Congress continues work on the 2018 Farm Bill. Ted McKinney will take charge of the newly-created mission area focused on trade, and wake up every morning seeking to sell more American agricultural products in foreign markets. We eagerly await their arrival at USDA, and urge the Senate to continue to act on other nominees who are awaiting confirmation.”
Related article: Trump nominates Clovis, McKinney to USDA posts
“For more than two decades, Stephen Censky has been a strong voice for farmers in Missouri and across the nation,” said Missouri Sen. Roy Blunt in a media statement. “His extensive knowledge and leadership in the agriculture industry, prior public service, and experience growing up on a farm will make him a tremendous asset to the department.”
Sens. Pat Roberts, R-Kansas, and Debbie Stabenow, D-Michigan, chairman and ranking member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, announced Oct. 2 that USDA nominees Stephen Censky and Ted McKinney may now be considered by the full U.S. Senate for confirmation. Censky is from Missouri and McKinney is from Indiana.
Related article: Stephen Censky nominated to be Deputy Ag Secretary
“With today’s vote, the Senate Agriculture Committee continues to do our part to vet and swiftly advance USDA nominees,” Roberts and Stabenow said. “We will continue to work together to get Secretary Perdue a qualified, functioning team at USDA. Our farmers and ranchers are counting on us.”
The Committee held a hearing on the nominees on Sept. 19.
Censky and McKinney have bipartisan support in the Senate, as well as support from a broad variety of agriculture organizations.
Related article: Perdue praises Censky, McKinney
The committee will hold a hearing at 9:30 a.m. Oct. 5 on USDA nominees Gregory Ibach and Bill Northey.
Related article: ASA, NCGA support Northey nomination
Ibach, of Nebraska, has been nominated to be Under Secretary of Agriculture for Marketing and Regulatory Programs and Northey, of Iowa, has been nominated to be Under Secretary of Agriculture for Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services
Source: Senate Agriculture Committee, USDA, Congress.gov