LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — Sherry Vinton was confirmed Wednesday as the director of the Nebraska Department of Agriculture, making her the first woman to head the agency.
Vinton, of Whitman, is a fifth-generation rancher with a family operation in the Nebraska Sandhills. She was appointed as director by Gov. Jim Pillen last month and confirmed Wednesday by the Nebraska Legislature. Vinton replaces Steve Wellman, who held the post under former Gov. Pete Ricketts starting in 2017.
A graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where she studied accounting, Vinton has served on the Cattlemen’s Beef Board and the Nebraska Environmental Trust board. Vinton also served as treasurer and mentor for the Nebraska Grazing Lands Coalition and is a member of the Agriculture Builders of Nebraska.
Starting in 2019, Vinton served as vice president of Nebraska Farm Bureau and served as a member of its board for six years.
In her presentation to the Legislature’s Agriculture Committee last month, Vinton said she would make international trade of the state’s agriculture products a top priority.
“I will continue to defend, promote and grow Nebraska agriculture,” she said.