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Montana politics, elections and legislative news.

Gianforte appoints Department of Agriculture director

Hay bales in a field.

Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte has appointed a director to the state Department of Agriculture.

Christy Clark has been serving as the acting director of the department since former director Mike Foster began overseeing the state’s spending plan for federal stimulus dollars last spring. Foster then retired last October after about nine months with the Gianforte administration.

According to a new release, Clark began working at the Department of Agriculture in 2015 under former Gov. Steve Bullock. She’s held various jobs there. Before that, Clark served three terms as a Republican state representative at the Montana Legislature.

Her appointment received endorsements from the Montana Grain Growers Association, the Montana Farm Bureau Federation and the Montana Stockgrowers Association.

Clark is originally from Choteau.

Shaylee is Montana Public Radio's Capitol reporter. She previously worked for the Bozeman Daily Chronicle and covered the 2019 legislative session for the University of Montana's Legislative News Service.