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American Jobs Act – West Coast Roundup

This past week, I traveled to the West Coast to connect with local leaders about President Barack Obama’s American Jobs Act, which will put Americans to work and get our economy back on track – all without adding a dime to the deficit.  It was a rewarding experience meeting the great people of California, Oregon and Washington, and it was apparent that they are ready to see the economy flourish again and believe this Act will get us there. Read more »

Honoring the Nation’s Hispanic Farmers

The whole nation is celebrating the Hispanic Heritage Month, honoring numerous achievements and contributions made by the Hispanic-Americans in many industries, including agriculture. Read more »

Faces of the Forest: Meet Joel Holtrop

Thirty-five years ago, Joel Holtrop embarked on his lifelong dream of serving the U.S. Forest Service, eventually working in a variety of jobs across the United States. Soon, the Deputy Chief of the Forest Service will embark on a new chapter of his life after retiring from the agency in early October.

“It’s not sufficient if I’ve helped accomplish sustaining forests during the length of my career,” Holtrop said. “I’ve only done my job if I’ve set the stage for the generations beyond my career.” Read more »

For CSU Scientist, Nutrition + Activity = Presidential Accolade

All Colorado State University (CSU) researcher Laura Bellows wanted to do was make a difference in people’s lives.  She ended up being recognized as one of the most promising young scientists in the country.

On Sept. 26, President Obama selected Bellows to receive the 2011 Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) in honor of her research into childhood obesity prevention.  PECASE annually recognizes scientists and engineers whose work enters the frontiers of science and technology. Read more »

Basic Agricultural Safeguarding Training BOOT CAMP Part II

In a previous blog post, we took a look at the training of Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) Plant Health Safeguarding Specialists (PHSS) at The Professional Development Center (PDC). Now, let’s meet some of the faces behind the manuals and microscopes: the 2011 class of Basic Agricultural Safeguarding Training (BAST).

Basic Agricultural Safeguarding Training student with a microscope

Basic Agricultural Safeguarding Training student with a microscope

Read more »

Renewable Energy Means Jobs for Americans

Biofuels – fuel from plant materials – may hold only vague meaning for many Americans.  But they are an opportunity our nation cannot afford to pass up.

When mixed with the gas that powers our cars and trucks, biofuels saved drivers almost 90 cents per gallon at the pump last year. Read more »