Barbara Rater serves as the Director of the Census and Survey Division where she provides leadership and oversight to sustaining the high quality of USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) census and survey data collection processes. She has a wide range of professional experiences and has led national programs and spearheaded international initiatives in efforts related to the collection, evaluation, and dissemination of agricultural statistics.
Previously, Barbara served as Branch Chief of NASS’s Survey Administration Branch, where she provided leadership and served as the central point of contact for policy and programs related to data collection and guided the agency’s strategic initiatives and operations affecting agricultural statistics used to measure food production and farm income.
Prior to moving into her role as Branch Chief, Barbara served as the Director of the NASS Maryland Field Office in Annapolis. As State Director, she interacted on a daily basis with growers, producers, and trade organizations; State and federal government agencies; Community Based Organizations and other stakeholders to build relationships and garnering support for better decision making in support of American agriculture.
Growing up in a military family, she is a native of Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri. Barbara received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Maryland College Park and is a graduate of the Key Executive Leadership Program from American University’s School of Public Administration. She and her husband live Prince George’s County Maryland and have one adult son. She has a passion for producing timely and quality results that can readily be used by decision makers to assess markets and policies and improve organizational performance and productivity.