Posted: Thursday, May 27, 2010 9:00 AM
Commodity inspection assistant director offers unique perspective
By MATTHEW WEAVER
Before he became a professional geologist, Brad Avy spent seven summers working in a variety of agriculture-related jobs.
He worked with peas, egg packing, raspberries, strawberries, hay baling, corn silage and driving trucks.
Avy's going to put that connection to use for wheat growers in his new position on the Washington Grain Commission board. He represents the Washington Department of Agriculture, which supervises the commission. Avy joined the board during its meeting in Spokane May 19-20.
Coming back to agriculture and combining it with management leadership and policy is a mix Avy finds appealing.
"Even though it's pretty basic in terms of agriculture exposure, at least for me personally it gives a connection," he said. "Absent that, it's really very challenging to really put into mind's eye what it's like to look at a 40-acre field in the morning, go out and mow that down, and the satisfaction that comes as a result of that on the other side of that day."
Avy joined the department two months ago as assistant director of the commodity inspection division.
On the commission, Avy will provide a department perspective on issues, offer guidance and keep the board advised of department activities.
Avy said he is willing to communicate and be available to wheat growers.
"Certainly I want to add value and provide whatever the commission needs," he said.
Before moving to Olympia, Wash., Avy lived in the Stillaguamish River area and spent some time in central Alaska drilling water wells.
Prior to joining the division, Avy was policy assistant to the department director, working on water and legislative issues. He has also worked as committee staff for the state House of Representatives, program manager for the Washington State Department of Health and in various capacities in toxic site cleanup.
He worked as an engineering geologist in the private industry.
"Brad is uniquely qualified for our board because of his diversified background," commission chair Dana Herron said. "He has touched on many of the elements of our industry we have gaps in as producers. His input is highly valued. His counsel will be welcome."
Washington Grain Commission: www.wawg.org
Washington Department of Agriculture: http://agr.wa.gov