New Natural Resources Conservation Service Chief Appointed

Washington, DC (August 23, 2006)- Department of Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns announced that Arlen Lancaster, a former Republican Hill staffer, will take over the management of the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), which oversees most of the farm bill conservation programs. Lancaster takes over for Bruce Knight, who was promoted last month to be USDA’s undersecretary for marketing and regulatory programs.

Lancaster will possibly oversee the next farm bill, which is expected in the next two years. Lancaster had a key role in drafting that title of the farm bill, according to USDA. He was an aide for Sen. Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) and served as staff director for the Senate Agriculture Forestry and Conservation Subcommittee from 2001-2005. Last year Lancaster moved to USDA, where he has worked as a deputy assistant secretary for congressional relations.