Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Texas are holding elections next week. Find out what's on your ballot in our latest report.

North Dakota Commissioner of Agriculture

From Ballotpedia
Jump to: navigation, search
North Dakota Commissioner of Agriculture
General information
Office Type:  Partisan
Office website:  Official Link
2011-2013 FY Budget:  $22,997,997
Term limits:  None
Length of term:   4 years
Authority:  North Dakota Constitution, Article V, Section 2
Selection Method:  Elected
Current Officeholder

Doug Goehring.jpg
Name:  Doug Goehring
Officeholder Party:  Republican
Assumed office:  April 2009
Compensation:  $99,435
Next election:  November 6, 2018
Last election:  November 4, 2014
Other North Dakota Executive Offices
GovernorLieutenant GovernorSecretary of StateAttorney GeneralTreasurerAuditorSuperintendent of EducationAgriculture CommissionerInsurance CommissionerNatural Resources CommissionerLabor CommissionerPublic Service CommissionTax Commissioner
The North Dakota Commissioner of Agriculture is an elected executive position in the North Dakota state government.

Current officeholder

The current officeholder is Doug Goehring. He was appointed in April 2009 to fill a vacancy, and was subsequently elected to a full, four-year term in 2010.


The state Constitution establishes the office of agriculture commissioner in Article V, Section 2:

The qualified electors of the state at the times and places of choosing members of the legislative assembly shall choose a governor, lieutenant governor, agriculture commissioner, attorney general, auditor, insurance commissioner, three public service commissioners, secretary of state, superintendent of public instruction, tax commissioner, and treasurer. ...

Term Length

See also: North Dakota State and County Official Term Lengths, Initiative 5 (1964)

The four-year term length was established after an initiated constitutional amendment on the 1964 ballot was approved. Prior to this, the term length was two years.[1]


Article V, Section 4 of the North Dakota Constitution establishes the qualifications to hold the office of agriculture commissioner:

To be eligible to hold an elective office established by this article, a person must be a qualified elector of this state, must be at least twenty-five years of age on the day of the election, and must have been a resident of this state for the five years preceding election to office. To be eligible to hold the office of governor or lieutenant governor, a person must be at least thirty years old on the day of the election. The attorney general must be licensed to practice law in this state.
  • qualified North Dakota voter
  • at least 25 years old
  • a resident of North Dakota for at least the five preceding years


Article V, Section 8 addresses vacancies in state executive offices. In the event of a vacancy, the governor nominates a successor who must be confirmed by the state senate. Once confirmed, the individual serves the remainder of the unexpired term.


Agriculture is one of North Dakota's leading industries, and the commissioner is responsible for ensuring the safety of people, animals, and plants across the state. The primary duties of the office are:

  • protect livestock and other domestic animals from disease
  • inspect farms and processing plants
  • regulate pesticide production, use and disposal
  • provide mediation services to farmers
  • certify the state's commodities
  • work with local jurisdictions on crop control[2]


North Dakota state government organizational chart

The commissioner of agriculture in North Dakota is popularly elected every four years, in midterm election years. For North Dakota, 2018, 2022 and 2026 are all agriculture commissioner election years. The term of office is four years.

Full history


See also: North Dakota down ballot state executive elections, 2014

Republican incumbent Doug Goehring won re-election on November 4, 2014.

North Dakota Agriculture Commissioner, 2014
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngDoug Goehring Incumbent 57% 139,597
     Democratic Ryan Taylor 42.9% 105,094
     Nonpartisan Write-in votes 0.2% 377
Total Votes 245,068
Election Results via North Dakota Secretary of State.


  • The Agricultural Mediation Service offers assistance to financially distressed farmers and ranchers with personalized help in negotiating credit and financial disputes.
  • The Business Development Division provides education, marketing and management services to farmers, on-farm businesses, youth, and agriculture-related industries.
  • The Livestock Division licenses livestock dealers and livestock auction markets in order to protect livestock producers.
  • The Pesticides Division regulates the proper use, registration, distributions, sale and storage of pesticides within the state.
  • The Plant Division regulates crop production, nurseries and import and export certifications.
  • The North Dakota Board of Animal Health is composed of representatives from each of the state's major livestock groups and chaired by the state veterinarian. The board is responsible for the controlling, preventing and eradicating diseases in all animals within the state, including pets.

State budget

See also: North Dakota state budget and finances

The budget for the Department of Agriculture in Fiscal Year 2011-2013 was $22,997,997.[3]


See also: Compensation of state executive officers

The North Dakota Commissioner of Agriculture is legally entitled to an annual salary in accordance with Title 4 of the North Dakota Century Code. Taking into account value adjustments, the statute contains compensation figures for the previous and current year only.[4]


In 2014, the North Dakota Commissioner of Agriculture received a salary of $99,435, according to the Council of State Governments.[5]


In 2013, the North Dakota Commissioner of Agriculture was paid an estimated $95,610. This figure comes from the Council of State Governments.[6]


In 2012, the North Dakota Commissioner of Agriculture was paid an estimated $90,122. This figure comes from the Council of State Governments.

Historical officeholders

Note: Ballotpedia's state executive officials project researches state official websites for chronological lists of historical officeholders. That information for the North Dakota Commissioner of Agriculture has not yet been added because the information was unavailable on the relevant state official websites, or we are currently in the process of formatting the list for this office. If you have any additional information about this office for inclusion on this section and/or page, please email us.

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the term North + Dakota + Commissioner + of + Agriculture

All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.

North Dakota Commissioner of Agriculture News Feed

  • Loading...

Contact information

North Dakota Department of Agriculture
600 East Boulevard, Dept 602
Bismarck, ND 58505-0020

Phone: 701-328-2231
Toll free: 1-800-242-7535
Fax: 701-328-4567

Email: Department of Agriculture Contact for all divisions and staff

See also

External links

Suggest a link