The United States Senate confirmed the nomination of Gale A. Buchanan, former dean and director of the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, as Under Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.Also confirmed by the Senate on May 12 for USDA appointments were Boyd Rutherford as assistant secretary for administration, Linda Strachan as assistant secretary for congressional relations and Marc Kesselman as general counsel. “I’m pleased today that the U.S. Senate has acted to confirm the nominations to four very important positions at the U.S.Department of Agriculture,” said Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns. “Each of these nominees has demonstrated remarkable leadership abilities throughout their careers in both public and private service,” he said, “and I’m confident that they will greatly contribute to fulfilling USDA’s mission of service to our citizens. I look forward to working with them in delivering the programs and services that are the hallmark of USDA’s commitment to our employees and the people we serve.”Buchanan was dean and director of the UGA CAES until he retiredin April 2005. He served for 20 years on the Auburn University faculty before moving to Georgia as associate director for the Georgia Agricultural Experiment Stations and resident director of the Coastal Plain Experiment Station.
A week after the women?s swim team collected eight NCAA ?A? times and 20 ?B? times, the men?s swim team will try their hand at the Big Ten Championships. Beginning Thursday, the Badgers will travel to Ann Arbor, Mich., to compete at the Canham Natatorium. Coming off two straight losses at the hands of Minnesota and Purdue, the men are looking to get back into the groove that helped them defeat Hawaii in their home waters back in January.?(Our guys) will have to swim fast at the Big Ten meet,? UW swimming and diving coach Eric Hansen said following the latest meet at the conference Quad Duals in West Lafayette, Ind.Wisconsin lost its first matchup versus Purdue 268-85. The next day, they fell in a similar fashion to Minnesota by a score of 265-88.?[W]e swam hard, but are still pretty beat-up from training,? Hansen said. ?They?ll have some time to rest (before the Big Ten Championships).?Some bright spots from the duals for the Badgers included juniors Scott Rice and Kyle Sorenson. Rice finished second twice against the Boilermakers before ending his meet with a third-place finish in the 100-yard butterfly with a time of 49:21. Sorenson also turned in a solid performance, earning fourth place in the 50-yard freestyle and also finishing seventh in the 100-yard butterfly race.Another Badger, senior Brett Koerton, took fifth place in his race, the 400-yard individual medley. The next highest Wisconsin finishers in that race were sophomore Steven Wiesner and junior Ben Bruce, who finished ninth and tenth, respectively.Top Wisconsin diver Caleb Percevecz took fourth place in the three-meter event with a 323.15 score, but finished sixth in the one-meter event with a 292.85 mark.The team has had over three weeks to recover from the duals and gear up for the Big Ten Championships. They traveled to Michigan Monday afternoon in order to acquaint themselves with the University of Michigan?s pool.The Badgers will have their work cut out for them, though. Wisconsin will again be facing Minnesota, ranked No. 9 in the nation, and Purdue, the 12th-ranked team. Moreover, Michigan, Indiana, Ohio State, Penn State and Northwestern ? all of which are ranked in the top 20 ? will also be competing against Wisconsin, who are 4-5 on the season in dual competition. The Badgers, who finished 2007 ranked 29th in the nation, will be heading into the meet at Ann Arbor as heavy underdogs.Anything is possible in a race, and the Badgers will look to make something happen. Hoping to conjure the same kind of magic that allowed them to sweep Hawaii and pull victories from Iowa, UW-Milwaukee and UW-Green Bay, Wisconsin is set to dig in at the Canham Natatorium and upset some favorites in a conference known for swimming powerhouses.? UWBadgers.com contributed to this report.