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APHIS Deputy Administrator for Veterinary Services Dr. John Clifford on World Veterinary Year 2011

I’m Dr. John Clifford, Chief Veterinary Officer for the USDA and the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) Deputy Administrator for Veterinary Services.  Over nearly the last 26 years I’ve had the pleasure of holding numerous positions within the agency.  Here’s my story on how I got to where I am today.

I was born in Bowling Green, Ky. and my desire to become a veterinarian began while growing up on the family farmstead near Brownsville.  We raised mainly beef cattle and I always liked working with them.  There was one local veterinarian who would come out two or three times a year to our farm.  The highlight of the visits for me was being his assistant.  I learned to work the cattle and about vaccination and preventative treatments.  Those few encounters ignited a hankering that culminated with my career in veterinary medicine. Read more »

Recovery Act Gives Picturesque Alaskan Visitor Center a Boost

A picturesque view of the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center located on the Tongass National Forest in Juneau, Alaska

A picturesque view of the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center located on the Tongass National Forest in Juneau, Alaska

The Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center located on the Tongass National Forest in Southeast Alaska is a site to see for many tourists.  This recently renovated Center is a popular cruise ship destination giving a boost to the local economy. Tourism spending in the Juneau, Alaska area is expected to reach $160 million this summer season. Read more »

Water Grows Our Economy – Lets Make it Last

Cotton is planted into wheat stubble on Kitten  Farms in Lubbock, Texas. This is one of many farming operations in the arid Texas High Plains region that utilizes minimum tillage methods to help conserve soil moisture and reduce water use through irrigation systems.

Cotton is planted into wheat stubble on Kitten Farms in Lubbock, Texas. This is one of many farming operations in the arid Texas High Plains region that utilizes minimum tillage methods to help conserve soil moisture and reduce water use through irrigation systems.

The general public has a fresh opportunity to learn how water grows an economy through a recently launched communications campaign in Texas’ High Plains region. Read more »

USDA Releases Report on Agriculture and Forestry Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Carbon Sequestration Trends

USDA’s Office of the Chief Economist’s Climate Change Program Office has released the “U.S. Agriculture and Forestry Greenhouse Gas Inventory: 1990-2008” report.  This report provides detailed estimates of greenhouse gas emissions and carbon sequestration from the management of livestock, croplands, and forests, as well as from energy use in agriculture that will be useful to states and localities. In 2008, agricultural greenhouse gas sources accounted for about 6% of total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions.

It was prepared collaboratively with contributions from the USDA Agricultural Research Service, USDA Forest Service, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, USDA Office of Energy Policy and New Uses, USDA Climate Change Program Office, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and researchers at Colorado State University. Read more »

Homeownership Month in Virginia-Special Gifts for a Job Well Done

As the sun rose on the beginning of a normal workday last fall for Rural Development Area Specialist, Vanessa Ingles, little did she know that one of her recent housing repair recipients had some special gifts awaiting her.

Mrs. Roxie Whorley and her granddaughter Roxanna Mize who live in the shadows of the Skyline Drive in the rural community of Bent Mountain, Virginia, were in need of a new heating system. The old wood-fired system, located in the basement, had been in the home for many years and had reached its last mile of service.  Mrs. Whorley had heard about a program that might be able to help, so she contacted the USDA Service Center in Christiansburg for some assistance in purchasing a new one. Read more »