Winnebago woman appointed to top USDA post
Mary McNeil, a member of the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska, has been appointed to a post at the Department of Agriculture.

McNeil will serve as deputy assistant secretary for civil rights. President Barack Obama and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack have said the want to improve the department's record, which includes a major class action lawsuit alleging systemic discrimination against Indian farmers and ranchers.

"As we embark on a new era in civil rights at USDA, Mary McNeil brings vast experience to USDA in both civil rights and American Indian programs at the Department," said Vilsack in a press release. "Her leadership will enhance President Obama's and my goal of USDA being a model employer and premier service provider to all."

McNeil, who worked at USDA during the Clinton administration, recently served as the transition advisor to the National Congress of American Indians and on the Obama-Biden Presidential Transition.

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