Krysta Harden serves as executive vice president of global environmental strategy for Dairy Management Inc. (DMI), which manages the national dairy checkoff on behalf of nearly 34,000 U.S. dairy farmers.
Leveraging a strong background within agriculture, sustainability and food policy, Harden plays a key leadership role in defining the vision, strategy and plan forward for securing U.S. dairy’s global position on sustainable nutrition. Collaborating with dairy farmers and leadership within the dairy community through the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy, Harden will continue to identify the science, best practices and metrics that will further advance the positive impact U.S. dairy has on the environment and the important role it plays in a sustainable food system. She also provides executive leadership on the Innovation Center’s Environmental Stewardship Committee.
Before DMI, Harden served three years as senior vice president, external affairs and chief sustainability officer for Corteva Agriscience, the Agriculture Division of DowDuPont. She also spent three years as DuPont vice president of public policy and chief sustainability officer.
Harden spent seven years at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), where she was deputy secretary for nearly three years and helped shape food and agriculture policy, including leading implementation of the 2014 Farm Bill. She also was chief of staff to Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and was assistant secretary for congressional relations.
Preceding her service at USDA, Harden was CEO of the National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) for five years, providing national leadership for natural resource conservation and representing thousands of conservation districts across the nation.
She also worked with the American Soybean Association as senior vice president of Gordley Associates, where she concentrated on conservation and renewable energy issues. She also spent 12 years on Capitol Hill as staff director for the House subcommittee on peanuts and tobacco, and as chief of staff and press secretary for former Congressman Charles Hatcher.
Harden received her B.A. in journalism from the University of Georgia in 1981.