Deputy Under Secretary for Rural Development
Bette Brand has served as the Deputy Under Secretary for Rural Development since February 2020. Before this appointment, Brand served as the Rural Business-Cooperative Service Administrator. Deputy Under Secretary Brand has supported the Rural Development mission through strong leadership, program stewardship, and also through partnerships within the federal family with sister agencies like SBA and DOE. Since her arrival to USDA in January 2018, Deputy Under Secretary Brand has prioritized increasing rural America’s access to capital, investing in innovative technology, and helping businesses create jobs.
Deputy Under Secretary Brand came to USDA after 35 years with Farm Credit of the Virginias, where she served as chief advocate for the agriculture industry and rural businesses, supporting producers at the state and national level and educating policymakers and consumers on agriculture. Prior to this, Deputy Under Secretary Brand served as Chief Sales Officer, overseeing the business development of a $1.6 billion credit portfolio, managing a team of commercial agriculture and agribusiness lenders, and supervising FCV’s marketing and branding. She has wide-ranging experience promoting rural communities, having served on the Virginia Agribusiness Council, the Virginia Horse Council, the Virginia Cooperative Council, and the Virginia Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom.
Ms. Brand enjoys traveling in her official capacity as Deputy Under Secretary to better understand the specific needs of America’s diverse rural communities and to discuss with local leaders the best way to serve them.
Deputy Under Secretary Brand has a degree in Animal Science and an MBA from Virginia Tech. She and her husband David live in Roanoke, Virginia and have three grown sons.