HARTFORD, Conn. — Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles was elected second vice president of the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture (NASDA) today on the last day of its annual meeting.
“I am honored and humbled to be elected to this high office in a national agriculture organization,” Quarles said. “It’s always important for Kentucky to have a seat at the table when national ag policy is being crafted. I will use this office to represent the interests of Kentucky farmers and agribusinesses.”
Quarles is the first Kentucky agriculture commissioner to hold office in NASDA since Billy Ray Smith, who served as president of the national organization in 2001-2002. Commissioner Quarles served as secretary-treasurer in 2017-2018.
Quarles was elected Kentucky’s agriculture commissioner in November 2015 and assumed office the following January. At 34, he is the youngest statewide elected official in the United States. Quarles’ family has lived and farmed in central Kentucky for more than 200 years. He served as a state representative for six years prior to his election as agriculture commissioner.
NASDA is a nonpartisan, nonprofit association that represents the elected and appointed commissioners, secretaries, and directors of the departments of agriculture in all 50 states and four U.S. territories. To learn more about NASDA, visit nasda.org.