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2015 Alumni Fellow

Posted: October 23, 2015

Russell C. Redding '82 Agricultural Education, '99g Agricultural and Extension Education, Pennsylvania Secretary of Agriculture

Russell C. Redding was confirmed by a unanimous vote of the Pennsylvania Senate on May 14, 2015, as the 26th Secretary of Agriculture for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. He is the former dean of the School of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences at Delaware Valley University. 

Redding leads the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, which encourages, protects, and promotes agriculture and related industries while providing consumer protection through inspection services that impact the health and financial security of Pennsylvania’s citizens. Agriculture and related industries contribute nearly $75 billion to Pennsylvania’s economy.

View Secretary Redding's Alumni Fellow acceptance speech.

Redding has extensive experience as a public servant, having spent more than 20 years serving Pennsylvania in Harrisburg and Washington, D.C. He worked on Capitol Hill as Agriculture Policy Advisor to U.S. Senator Harris Wofford and served for 16 years in the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, serving as secretary from 2009—11 under Governor Ed Rendell. A native of Pennsylvania, Redding has an innate understanding of production agriculture, stemming from his youth on his family’s dairy farm and his time as a dairy farm operator. He currently serves as Chair of the USDA Advisory Committee on Biotechnology and 21st Century Agriculture.

Redding, a graduate of the Penn State Agribusiness Executive Program in 2005, was also named an Outstanding Alumnus by the College of Agricultural Sciences and inducted into the Armsby Honor Society in 2006. Redding and his wife, Nina ’01g, are members of the Penn State Alumni Association and live in the Gettysburg area with their sons, Garrison and Elliot.