Gov. Ricketts names new Director of Agriculture

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LINCOLN, Neb. - Governor Pete Ricketts introduced Steve Wellman as the new Director of the Nebraska Department of Agriculture (NDA).

Wellman operates a fourth-generation family farm near Syracuse, Nebraska.

“My administration’s vision is to grow Nebraska, and our state’s number one industry is absolutely critical to realizing this goal,” said Governor Ricketts. “As a family farmer and respected leader in Nebraska agriculture, Steve brings broad experience to the position having served in leadership in ag organizations at the state and local level. He will be a voice for Nebraska’s farm and ranch families, and will work to expand market access, add value to our quality commodities, and advocate for property tax relief.”

Wellman, 56, owns and operates a family farm producing soybeans, corn, wheat, alfalfa, and cattle. His wife Susan works as a public school teacher. They have two grown children.

In addition to the family farm, Wellman has experience as a tax consultant, and has served on the advisory board of American National Bank and Community Memorial Hospital Board of Directors.

“As a family farmer, I understand the importance of a successful ag sector to our communities and the entire state,” said NDA Director Steve Wellman. “I will put my background to work to raise Nebraska’s profile both nationally and internationally as well as fight for property tax relief. Working together, we can grow opportunities for Nebraska’s next generation of ag producers.”

His first day as Director will be Tuesday, December 5, 2017. His salary will be $115,000.

This appointment follows Director Greg Ibach, who was named Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs at the U.S. Department of Agriculture by President Trump.