Former U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Mike Johanns has been elected to OSI Group’s board of directors, effective February 18. Johanns is also a former governor of Nebraska and U.S. Senator, having recently completed his first term in the U.S. Senate.

“Mike brings a wealth of experience in public service and expertise in agriculture, banking, commerce, trade and law – which will be great assets to OSI,” said Sheldon Lavin, OSI chairman and chief executive officer. “We are pleased that Mike has agreed to join the OSI board.” 

“It is an honor to be selected to serve on the board of the OSI Group, an organization that has long been recognized for its strong heritage of food safety, quality assurance and innovation,” said Johanns.  

Johanns served as governor of Nebraska from 1999 to 2005 and as U.S. Secretary of Agriculture from 2005 until 2007. He was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2008 and announced in 2013 that he would not seek a second term after more than three decades in public life.

Johanns’ appointment to the OSI board makes him the second former USDA official to become affiliated with the company. In early February, OSI Group named Dr. Kenneth Petersen as senior vice president of quality assurance, food safety and regulatory affairs.  Peterson had earlier served as assistant administrator for the Office of Field Operations for the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS).