John Shea, 202-690-0437
BIOGRAPHY: RMA ASSOCIATE ADMINISTRATOR BARBARA M. LEACH
Barbara M. Leach is Associate Administrator of USDA's Risk Management Agency (RMA),
which provides economic protection and risk management tools to America’s farmers and ranchers primarily
sponsored crop insurance delivered and serviced by private insurance companies.
Ms. Leach has worked within the agriculture community for about 25 years, including serving as RMA’s Chief of
Staff from 1998-2001. Ms. Leach was then recruited to lead a crop insurance project under the terms of the US-Republic
of South Africa Bi-National Agreement, with her work resulting in new USAID funding and the passage of ground-breaking
authorizing legislation by the South African Parliament. More recently, as president and founder of
My Rural America Action Fund (MRA), she worked to educate rural citizens about strengthening their voice in Washington
regarding economic policymaking affecting rural families.
A native of Atlantic, IA, Ms. Leach was co-owner/manager of Leach Farms, Inc., a Century Family Farm
operation that included corn, soybeans, a farrow-to-finish hog operation and finishing for about 300 head of
fat cattle each year during the 1970’s. During most of that time, she also worked for the National Farmers
Organization as a community organizer. Ms. Leach has a Bachelor of Science degree in Government and Politics from
the University of Maryland’s University College and has completed additional graduate study in International Marketing.