United States Trade Representative Rob Portman today thanked the United
States Senate for their swift action on the nomination of Richard Crowder as
USTR Chief Agricultural Negotiator.
"Trade is critical to U.S. agriculture because the produce from one of every
three acres grown in the U.S. is exported," Amb. Portman said. "Dick’s
experience and background give him a unique understanding of domestic and
international agricultural issues. His input will be crucial in helping to
unlock the agricultural deadlock at the WTO and advancing the work that began
last week in Hong Kong. I look forward to working with him on these critical
agricultural issues and I thank the Senate for this swift confirmation."
Dr. Crowder will be responsible for directing all U.S. agricultural trade
negotiations anywhere in the world, including multilaterally in the World Trade
Organization, as well as regionally and bilaterally.
Dr. Crowder has more than 30 years experience in the food, agriculture, and
international trade industries. He has been president and CEO of the American
Seed Trade Association, Alexandria, Va., since 2002.
Prior to joining ASTA, he worked as an independent consultant. From 1984-1999
he was Senior Vice President, International, of DEKALB Genetics Corporation (now
part of Monsanto), a worldwide leader in agricultural genetics and seed
biotechnology that markets hybrid corn, sorghum and sunflower seed as well as
varietal soybean and alfalfa. In this role he managed all of DEKALB's business
outside of the United States involving more than 30 countries.
Before joining DEKALB in 1994, Dr. Crowder was Executive Vice President and
General Manager, International of meat processor Armour Swift-Eckrich, a
division of ConAgra. From 1975-89, he worked at the Pillsbury Company in a
series of increasingly responsible senior executive positions.
He served as Under Secretary of International Affairs & Commodity
Programs for the U.S. Department of Agriculture from 1989-1992. In this role, he
was responsible for all agencies concerned with international trade and
development as well as domestic farm programs. He had leadership roles in major
trade negotiations and the 1990 Farm Bill.
Dr. Crowder, who grew up on a farm in Virginia, has a B.S. and M.S. from
Virginia Tech and a Ph.D. from Oklahoma State University.