Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry
Todd Haymore became Virginia’s second Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry in January 2010, succeeding Robert S. Bloxom. In addition to serving in Governor McDonnell’s Cabinet and his duties as the chief marketing and development officer of the state’s two largest industries, Haymore is responsible for two of the state’s most well known agencies, the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) and the Virginia Department of Forestry (DOF). He is also responsible for the Virginia Agricultural Council.
Prior to his appointment as Secretary, Haymore served as Commissioner of the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services from August 2007 to January 2010. The Department is responsible for over 60 laws and more than 70 regulations relating to consumer protection and the promotion of agriculture. It is organized into four units, the Commissioner's Office, the Division of Animal and Food Industry Services, the Division of Consumer Protection, and the Division of Marketing. VDACS has an operational budget of $57 million and employs just under 500 full-time staff. The agency’s mission is to promote the economic growth and development of Virginia agriculture, provide consumer protection and encourage environmental stewardship.
The Virginia Department of Forestry protects almost 16 million acres of forest land from fire, insects and disease and manages 22 state forests and other state lands totaling approximately 67,000 acres for timber, recreation, water, research, wildlife and biodiversity. DOF assists non-industrial private forest landowners through professional forestry advice and technical management programs. The Department has an operational budget of approximately $26 million and employs 260 salaried staff. The agency’s mission is to protect and develop healthy, sustainable forest resources for Virginians.
Haymore is a native of Pittsylvania County and was born and raised on his maternal grand-parent’s farm. He began his professional career as a legislative intern in Richmond to former Virginia State Senator Onico Barker (R-19th). From there, Haymore moved to Washington, DC to serve as a legislative assistant for former United States Representative L.F Payne (VA-5th). Haymore spent most of the 1990’s with Rep. Payne where he also served as the congressman’s communications director, as well as deputy campaign manager of Payne’s lieutenant gubernatorial bid. Following his tenure with Congressman Payne, Haymore worked in Danville for DIMON Incorporated, a leaf tobacco company that later merged with Standard Commercial Corporation to form Alliance One International. Haymore then joined Richmond-based Universal Leaf Tobacco Company. He served in various leadership positions from 1999-2007, concluding his time with the company as Corporate Director, External Affairs and Vice President of The Universal Leaf Foundation.
Todd graduated from George Washington High School in Danville. He received his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science from the University of Richmond and his Masters of Business Administration Degree from Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU). Todd also completed training at the Performance Management Group’s Virginia Executive Institute at VCU. Todd is married to the former Margaret Cary Lewis and they have three children, Catharine Cole Haymore and Elizabeth Whichard Haymore (twins), and Lillian Bryan Haymore.