Thursday, November 03, 2011

Secretary Vilsack Previews 2012 Celebration Of Agriculture Department's 150th Anniversary

A visit to President Lincoln's hometown to unveil new logo, new website, and "soft launch" the year of festivities...
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on Wednesday unveiled a new logo and a new webpage for the upcoming 150th anniversary of the US Department of Agriculture, which will be celebrated throughout 2012. President Abraham Lincoln established the USDA in 1862 in the midst of the Civil War, and it is now the largest federal agency. Vilsack traveled to Springfield, Ill., hometown of President Lincoln, for the "soft launch" of the commemorative year. He was joined at the Old State Capitol by members of the Future Farmers of America, and Deputy Undersecretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs Ann Wright. (Above: Vilsack is at right of the new logo, and Wright is at left)

“Through our work on food, agriculture, economic development, science, natural resource conservation and a host of issues, USDA still fulfills President Lincoln's vision as ‘The People's Department’ — touching the lives of every American, every day," Vilsack said. "As we commemorate 150 years, we will look for lessons from the past that can help us strengthen USDA in the future to address the changing needs of agriculture and rural America."

Throughout 2012, USDA will mark important events, such as Lincoln signing the Department of Agriculture Organic Act on May, 15, of 1862, which established the Department, and the June signing of the Morrill Act to establish public land grant universities. The year-long commemoration will formally launch in February of 2012 at the USDA’s annual Agricultural Outlook Forum. Wednesday's party included a big cake with the new logo (above).

*Top photo by Lance Cheung/USDA, second by Bob Nichols/USDA