Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – NASDA sends our deepest condolences to the family of Bill Northey, CEO of Iowa Association of Agribusiness, who recently passed. As former Iowa Secretary of Agriculture, Bill was a NASDA member from 2007 – 2018 and served as NASDA President from 2011 – 2012.

NASDA CEO Ted McKinney and NASDA President, Oklahoma Secretary of Agriculture Blayne Arthur reflected on the personal impact Bill made in their lives and for the industry.

“Bill Northey was my good friend as he was to so very many others. We have lost a titan in U.S. agriculture. All of NASDA expresses sorrow for his loss and our love and support go out to his wife Cindy and his family. As a lifelong leader in the industry, Bill had an immense depth of knowledge and experience that he shared to benefit all of agriculture,” McKinney said.

“Bill was well known for his care for others, love of learning and deep appreciation for agriculture and those who work to feed the world. His heart and experience as a fourth-generation farmer made him a one-of-a-kind leader for agriculture,” Arthur said.

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture and NASDA member Mike Naig also released a statement sharing his sentiments.

“As Secretary, he had a tremendously positive impact on our state and the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, but his influence went well beyond our borders. Whether it was on issues like soil conservation, water quality, renewable energy, foreign animal disease preparedness or trade, Bill was respected nationally and internationally. Bill was smart and people looked toward his leadership on every issue he focused on,” Naig said.

Bill also served our country as Under Secretary for Farm Production and Conservation at the U.S. Department of Agriculture from 2018 to 2021, making a difference for food security around the globe. Bill was a cherished husband, father, grandfather, friend, mentor and farmer. NASDA sends our deepest condolences to all those who knew Bill or were impacted by him in any way.

Current NASDA CEO Ted McKinney, Former NASDA CEO Dr. Barb Glenn, 2020-2021 NASDA President Ryan Quarles and Bill Northey pose for a group photo in 2017.


NASDA is a nonpartisan, nonprofit association which represents the elected and appointed commissioners, secretaries and directors of the departments of agriculture in all 50 states and four U.S. territories. NASDA enhances American food and agricultural communities through policy, partnerships and public engagement. To learn more about NASDA, please visit

Contact Information

Sarah Grace Fowler
Director, Communications
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