For the first time in the state’s history, a woman is nominated to serve as Secretary of Agriculture.
Blayne Arthur is an Oklahoma farm girl, born and raised. She is also Governor Elect Kevin Stitt’s choice for Secretary of Agriculture. She says farming and agriculture are ever changing, and she knows how make Oklahoma more competitive.
"I've actually worked for two secretaries of agriculture here in Oklahoma. For Secretary Reese I was a deputy commissioner so worked a lot on policy, interacted with the legislature quite a bit." Arthur said.
Arthur certainly has the resume for the job. At just 37-years old, she has 37-years experience in farming and agriculture.
"Livestock was a huge component of what we did as kids. We grew up in a very much strong family environment. Loved competing with both the horses and the cattle. Gave us a chance to meet people not only across Oklahoma but across the nation and develop relationships." She said.
Arthur says, after working in the Department of Agriculture, she’s sure she can find inefficiencies and cut costs. She also wants to utilize technology and her contacts to bring more agriculture processing to the state.
"We grow lot of commodities but send them to other states to be processed. We can work with the department of commerce and say how can you all help us recruit some of those which promotes economic development in the urban areas and the rural areas," she said.
Arthur says, being considered for the position of first female state secretary of agriculture is a big deal. Her mother died in the Oklahoma City Bombing when she was just 13-years old.
"I have two sisters and the thing that we're always proud of is she was a great parent, but also from a career perspective she was a veterinarian before there were a whole lot of female veterinarians and very successful in her job," she said, "And so I think we all look at that and say she kinda gave us the path to say whatever you want to do just work hard and get an education and go after it."
The nomination now has to be confirmed by the State Senate.