Sara Eckhouse serves as Chief of Staff for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS), which facilitates the competitive and efficient marketing of agricultural products in domestic and international markets. With a multi-billion dollar budget and over 4,000 employees, AMS programs create opportunities for all segments of American agriculture, including by providing services and grant investments that bolster economic development in communities around the country. Since joining AMS is April 2012, Sara has advised the Administrator on the full range of agency activities. She has particularly focused on policies and strategies that support USDA and AMS priorities related to organic agriculture, local and regional food systems, and access to healthy food.
From 2010 to 2012, Sara worked as a Legislative Assistant and Assistant to the Senate Liaison at the White House Office of Legislative Affairs. Prior to that, she was a Special Assistant at USDA for Marketing and Regulatory Programs. Sara also worked as a Field Organizer for the 2008 Obama campaign. Originally from Des Moines, Iowa, Sara’s interest in agriculture and food systems grew after her parents started La Quercia, which works with sustainable producers to make prosciutto and other cured pork products in Norwalk, Iowa. She graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College.