South Dakota agriculture secretary to leave post in July

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) – South Dakota’s agriculture secretary is leaving his position to join an electric cooperative in the state.

Secretary of Agriculture Mike Jaspers said Wednesday he’s stepping down from his post July 1. Jaspers is set to become business development director for East River Electric Power Cooperative, based in Madison, South Dakota.

He took over as agriculture secretary in 2016.

Jaspers says serving South Dakota’s top industry has been “extremely fulfilling.” Gov. Dennis Daugaard says Jaspers’ knowledge and experience have strengthened the Agriculture Department.

State Veterinarian Dustin Oedekoven will be interim secretary for the rest of Daugaard’s administration, which ends in January.