WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden today named several people to fill key regional leadership positions, including Erin Oban as USDA North Dakota’s State Director of Rural Development.
A White House press release said the appointees will be essential to the president’s efforts to rebuild communities hardest hit by the pandemic, economic recovery and climate change.
Oban appeared on Afternoons Live with Tyler Axness and said the nomination was an honor. She said the extensive process began in December.
“I feel really lucky to be able to use some of the skills and relationships I developed as a legislator to be able to continue to serve North Dakotans,” Oban said. “One of my favorite parts of the job…is connecting people to programs and problems with solutions.”
She said there are incredible staff in rural development that she is willing to work with. She said the first thing she needs to do is learn from the people who have done the work, gain the trust of the staff and do outreach to make sure people know what the ministry has to do. to offer.
Oban said she was excited to get down to business and help people.
“I want to be an example of what government is supposed to do right, and right, and in a way that’s non-partisan,” Oban said. “This work is non-partisan. Government, in partnership with communities, can really help people have the life they want to have.
Oban grew up on a family farm in Ray, ND, a small rural community in the heart of Bakken oil country. She moved to Bismarck where she earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics education from the University of Mary.
In 2014, Oban was elected and re-elected in 2018 to represent Central Bismarck’s District 35 in the North Dakota State Senate. During her two terms in the Legislative Assembly, she served on the Senate Committees on Education, Energy and Natural Resources, Agriculture, Government Affairs and Veterans Affairs, and Political Subdivisions.
Senators John Hoeven and Kevin Cramer and Congressman Kelly Armstrong released statements after the administration’s announcement.
“USDA’s rural development programs provide important support to rural America, helping to strengthen and diversify local economies and ensure access to essential services,” said Committee Distinguished Senator Hoeven. Secretary of Agricultural Credits and member of the Senate Committee on Agriculture. “We will continue to work to provide the USDA with the tools necessary to achieve these goals, and we look forward to discussing the priorities and needs of our rural communities with State Director Oban.”
“The USDA State Director of Rural Development plays an important role as a point of contact for grants, loans, and loan guarantees to help create jobs, support economic development, and provide essential services. . From water to telecommunications, USDA Rural Development provides critical assistance to North Dakota communities. I look forward to working with Ms. Oban to improve the economy and quality of life in North Dakota,” said Senator Cramer.
“I served with Erin in the State Senate. She is smart, thoughtful, and will work hard every day for the people of North Dakota. I congratulate her on her appointment and look forward to working with my friend,” Rep. Armstrong said.
Oban is currently employed as Director of Community Engagement with the Central Regional Education Association, where she supports the efficiency and effectiveness of education through partnerships between school districts and local organizations and agencies, regional and national organizations to provide programs and services to students, families, and educators in their communities.
Biden announced nominations for USDA, FEMA and HUD.
Steve Dick and Nikki Gronli of South Dakota were also nominated. Dick will serve as the executive director of the South Dakota State Farm Service Agency. Gronli has been named the USDA’s state director of rural development in South Dakota.