Karen Ross

Secretary, California Department of Food and Agriculture

[Nutrition is] not just about enough basic calories to survive, but the nutrition to thrive and really allow each individual to have access to that food and really achieve their potential.

Karen Ross agrees that with thoughtful management, every acre itself can be more productive, without tearing out more land, using more water and fertilizer. As the Secretary of the California Department of Food and Agriculture, Ross strives to support the California tradition of innovation and agricultural diversity by working with private industry, academia and public sector agencies. In her current role, Ross draws from her previous experiences as President of the California Association of Winegrape Growers and chief of staff for U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.

Ross has a B.A. from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and is a graduate of the Nebraska Ag Leadership Program. In 2005 she was recognized by the California Agriculture Leadership Foundation with a Profiles in Leadership award.

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