Winona State University alumnus Todd Batta has been nominated by President Obama as the assistant secretary for congressional relations in the Department of Agriculture.

Obama expressed his gratitude for Batta and others nominated to key Administration posts, saying, “I am grateful that these talented and dedicated individuals have agreed to take on these important roles and devote their talents to serving the American people.”

Batta received a B.A. from Winona State University in 2001 and majored in history and political science.

Batta has been the Senior Advisor to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Tom Vilsack since 2012, making him responsible for providing advice and guidance to the Secretary in regards to the USDA’s budget, legislative and regulatory agenda. In his new position, Batta will serve as the chief liaison between Capitol Hill lawmakers and the Agriculture Department.

Prior to his work at USDA, he served as a member of U.S. Senator Tom Harkin’s staff from 2001 to 2005 and was a Professional Staff Member of the U.S. Senate’s Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee from 2005 to 2009. In 2008 Batta moved to the Senate Agriculture Committee and helped craft the 2008 Farm Bill, the federal government’s primary agricultural and food policy tool, and from 2009 to 2011 he was a legislative assistant to U.S. Senator Herb Kohl. Batta served as special assistant in the Congressional Relations office at USDA from September 2011 to April 2012.

For more information, contact the WSU Communications Office at 507-457-5024.

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Abby Peschges

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