Durbin Announces Four Illinoisans for USDA Positions

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the Obama Administration has chosen four members for the Farm Service Agency (FSA) Illinois State Committee: Darell Sarff of Chandlerville; Jill Appell of Altona; Gerardo (Jerry) Jimenez of Cobden; and Joyce Matthews of Nokomis. In February, Durbin recommended all four people for appointments to the committee positions within the Department of Agriculture (USDA).


“These four new members of the FSA State Committee have lifelong experience in many facets of Illinois agriculture will allow them to be effective leaders within the Department of Agriculture,” said Durbin. “I look forward to working with them, Secretary Vilsack and President Obama on both national and local agricultural issues.”


The Farm Service Agency aims to stabilize farm income, help farmers conserve land and water resources, provide credit to new or disadvantaged farmers and ranchers, and help farm operations recover from the effects of disaster. The Farm Service Agency uses a unique system under which federal farm programs are administered locally – a grassroots approach gives farmers a much-needed say in how Federal actions affect their communities and their individual operations.


The following four people will serve on the FSA Illinois State Committee:


• Darell Sarff of Chandlerville, Illinois. (Chairman) Darell is a Central Illinois grain and vegetable farmer. He is a past board member of the Illinois Farm Bureau


• Jill Appell of Altona, Illinois. Jill is the former Illinois State Director of USDA Rural Development and the past president of the National Pork Producers Council. She farms in Knox County.


• Gerardo (Jerry) Jimenez of Cobden, Illinois. Jerry runs Rancho Bella Vista, a farm that sells a variety of specialty peppers, jams, jellies, salsas, and spreads.


• Joyce Matthews of Nokomis, Illinois. Joyce is the former chair of the FSA Illinois State Committee. She currently serves on the Montgomery County Board.