Rob Larew, Minority Staff Director

Rob Larew
National Journal
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Jerry Hagstrom
Sept. 18, 2013, 4:30 p.m.

Larew, the com­mit­tee’s minor­ity staff dir­ect­or, knows what it’s like to be in the ma­jor­ity, most not­ably dur­ing the de­bate over the 2008 farm bill. He says the minor­ity staff’s job can be easi­er be­cause “it’s the job of the ma­jor­ity to act and the minor­ity to re­act.”

Al­though he man­ages a staff of only 10, Larew notes that the minor­ity staff is usu­ally only one-third the size of the ma­jor­ity, and that his staff is packed with ex­per­i­enced vet­er­ans.

Larew, 47, grew up on a West Vir­gin­ia dairy farm. After gradu­at­ing from Vir­gin­ia Tech with a ma­jor in dairy sci­ence, he joined the Peace Corps, be­com­ing a live­stock spe­cial­ist in Tan­zania, and later re­ceived a mas­ter’s de­gree in ag­ro­nomy and eco­nom­ics at Pennsylvania State Uni­versity.

In 1994, Rep. Col­lin Peterson, D-Minn., hired him to handle live­stock is­sues, and even­tu­ally pro­moted him to le­gis­lat­ive dir­ect­or. In 2003, Larew be­came dir­ect­or of con­gres­sion­al and pub­lic af­fairs for the Ag­ri­cul­ture De­part­ment’s Food Safety and In­spec­tion Ser­vice.

When Peterson be­came the Ag­ri­cul­ture Com­mit­tee’s rank­ing Demo­crat in 2005, Larew re­turned to Cap­it­ol Hill and has worked there — for both the minor­ity and the ma­jor­ity — ever since.