As of Tuesday, March 31, 2015
OLYMPIA Director Bud Hover is leaving the state Department of Agriculture to return to his farm in Okanogan County and spend more time with his wife and family.
“I believe we have made great strides in the past two years in advancing new and innovative solutions to help solve some of the pressing issues facing agriculture today as well as making great strides in improving efficiency in the Department of Agriculture,” he said in his resignation letter to Gov. Jay Inslee.
“However, after many hours of discussion with my wife, Tonya, and considering the needs of her aging father, we have decided that it is time to return to the farm and the Methow Valley.”
Inslee thanked Hover for his work at the agency.
“As a farmer himself, Bud has been a tireless advocate for the average farmer, making sure their concerns were heard at the highest levels of government,” Inslee said. “He provided key leadership in implementing a state-of-the-art animal disease traceability program that will better protect the state’s vital livestock industry, and provided important guidance in the difficult situation we faced with issues at our ports.”
A West Coast port workers’ slowdown earlier this year left agricultural products stranded on docks. The labor dispute has been settled.
Hover, a former Okanogan County commissioner, was appointed to lead the agency April 1, 2013. He will continue to serve through the current legislative session, scheduled to conclude April 26, to ensure a smooth transition.