In a tiny studio at the Fort Worth Stockyards, big names in the agriculture industry and cowboy world gathered to celebrate Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller’s swearing-in ceremony.

Miller, a Republican who will be serving his third term in office, made it a point that he does not like to have his official ceremony in Austin, home of the Texas Capitol.

“No other statewide elected official has ever been sworn in outside of Austin. Now, I broke that pretense four years ago when I got sworn in on the International Bridge in McAllen, Texas,” Miller said. “It’s better to be out here with the people instead of the bureaucrats and elected folks out in Austin.”

Some who attended included American Rodeo announcers Bob Tallman and Terry Starnes, Tarrant County Sheriff Bill Waybourn, the Decatur Future Farmers of America chapter, and Tarrant County Judge Tim O’Hare, who was elected into office on Nov. 8 and sworn in on Jan. 1.

Waybourn welcomed all guests to the Jan. 3 ceremony.

“No other time has the world stage been set where Texas needed a strong agricultural commissioner, and we’ve got issues going up on the horizons, we got battles to fight, and I’m just so proud and so blessed as a resident of Texas that Sid Miller is going to be our warrior,” Waybourn said.

Following the swearing-in speech, Miller talked about his accomplishments and goals. Notably, he said, he has won multiple lawsuits against President Joe Biden’s administration, including one stopping a farm program from granting aid specifically to racial and ethnic minorities and he enacted an executive order that allowed agriculture businesses to continue operation during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We’ve been going down the road and looking in the rearview mirror, and that little mirror’s only about that big, so I’d like to make a turn and look forward. We’ve got a big windshield and a lot of road ahead of us, a lot of things that we still need to accomplish,” Miller said. “I want to make sure that Uvalde doesn’t happen again. I want safe schools for our children.”

He added he plans to advocate to “close the border” and stop the “sexual mutilation of children.”

Miller will serve as Texas Agriculture Commissioner through 2026.

Cristian ArguetaSoto is the community engagement journalist at the Fort Worth Report. Contact him by email or via Twitter. At the Fort Worth Report, news decisions are made independently of our board members and financial supporters. Read more about our editorial independence policy here.

What does the Texas Agriculture Commissioner do?

Commissioner Miller launched Operation Maverick, a consumer protection initiative to round up businesses which failed to register their commercial scales with TDA. Registrations have increased 35 percent, and more than 2,000 previously unregistered businesses are now monitored by TDA to ensure consumers are protected.

A former agriculture teacher and school board member, Commissioner Miller is committed to fighting childhood obesity and promoting healthy lifestyles for Texas schoolchildren. His creation of Farm Fresh Fridays and other farm-to-school initiatives resulted in a $65 million increase in the amount of Texas products purchased by schools. Commissioner Miller is also passionate about ensuring rural communities have the water and infrastructure they need to thrive. To that end, he created TDA’s Office of Water to ensure all Texans have access to clean water for today and future generations. Additionally, under his guidance, TDA has directed hundreds of millions of dollars in federal funding through the Texas Community Development Block Grant program to local communities for infrastructure improvements and repairs.

Commissioner Miller is the state’s leading advocate around the world for Texas agriculture, Texas-grown products and Texas-owned businesses. He oversees TDA’s world-renowned GO TEXAN program — a marketing effort to showcase the best products, companies and communities that call the Lone Star State home. Since taking office, Commissioner Miller’s passion to increase market exposure for Texas agriculture has led him and his staff to mount trade missions to Cuba, Ecuador, Argentina, Israel, China and every continent on the globe, except Antarctica.

Under Commissioner Miller, TDA and its GO TEXAN program joined forces with AM Racing. As a GO TEXAN member, AM Racing and NASCAR driver Austin Wayne Self proudly displays the GO TEXAN mark on the hood of the No. 22 truck and Self’s race gear. Commissioner Miller is proud to partner with a Texas-based company that promotes Texas products to NASCAR fans across the nation.

Commissioner Miller has a weekly show on RFD-TV called Texas Agriculture Matters, that seeks to answer the question, “Why Does Texas Agriculture Matter?” From cattle to cotton and rodeos to rockets, Texas Agriculture Matters is a fun, informative look at the role of agriculture in our daily lives. Through feature segments, one-on-one interviews and eye-catching infographics, the show delivers equal doses of ag policy, local products, western heritage, and rural lifestyle.

Source: Texas Department of Agriculture

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Cristian is a May 2021 graduate of Texas Christian University. At TCU, ArguetaSoto served as staff photographer at TCU360 and later as its visual editor, overseeing other photojournalists. A Fort Worth...