The executive director of the Maryland Wineries Association has been tapped as the state’s next secretary of agriculture.

Kevin Atticks is also the founder of Grow & Fortify, a consulting firm that supports value-added agriculture.

Democratic Gov.-elect Wes Moore selected Atticks to replace Joseph Bartenfelder, who served the past eight years under Republican Gov. Larry Hogan. Moore will take office Wednesday. The Moore transition team said Atticks has promoted business growth and helped modernize regulations.

Atticks is the executive director of the Brewers Association of Maryland and the Maryland Distillers Guild. He serves on the University of Maryland College of Agriculture’s Global Leadership Council, and the boards of Future Harvest CASA and the Maryland Tourism Coalition.

He is a past president of the Maryland Agricultural Resource Council and past chair of the WineAmerica State and Regional Associations Advisory Council.

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