WASHINGTON, Aug. 2, 2013 – The Senate confirmed a long list of pending nominees for executive branch positions Thursday, including Krysta L. Harden as deputy secretary of agriculture and Robert Bonnie as under secretary of agriculture for natural resources and environment.

The confirmation of F. Scott Kieff, a law professor at George Washington University and senior fellow at Stanford University's Hoover Institution, to be a member of the U.S. International Trade Commission will bring to an end the long tenure of USITC Commissioner Daniel Pearson. Pearson, whose term expired in June 2011, was allowed to remain in office until Kieff was confirmed. Kieff’s nomination had been pending in the Senate since September 2012.

Pearson is a familiar face in Washington agricultural circles, serving on the USITC since his selection by former President George W. Bush in October 2003. Prior to his appointment, he was assistant vice president of public affairs for Cargill and agricultural legislative assistant to former Sen. Rudy Boschwitz, R-Minn.

The Senate also confirmed two EPA nominees: Avi S. Garbow as assistant administrator and general counsel and James J. Jones as assistant administrator for toxic substances. Garbow, currently deputy general counsel at the agency, had been in private law practice and spent more than 10 years as a federal prosecutor in the Justice Department’s Environmental Crimes Section, a special assistant United States attorney, and a special assistant to EPA’s assistant administrator for enforcement. Jones, a 25-year EPA veteran nominated in January 2012, has been acting assistant administrator in charge of the office responsible for pesticides and pollution prevention.

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