Election 2019

Republican incumbent Ryan Quarles has won reelection as Kentucky’s Commissioner of Agriculture.

The former state representative staked much of his bid for reelection on his efforts to develop the Kentucky Proud program, which markets local farm products, and efforts to expand hemp farming in the state — a plank that appears to have resonated with Kentucky voters.

In addition, Quarles has emphasized his status as a Kentucky native, working to improve the lives of Kentucky’s small farmers.

“I also believe that I’m the strongest candidate for this office because I grew up on a Kentucky farm. My family continues to farm today,” Quarles said ahead of the election. “It’s the primary source of income for my family growing up and continues to be so for my dad, and that separates myself from the competition.”

At only 36 years, Quarles holds two masters degrees, three undergraduate degrees and a doctorate in education from Vanderbilt University. He served in the legislature from 2010 until 2015.

Quarles defeated Democratic challenger Robert Conway.

Ryan Van Velzer is WFPL's Energy and Environment Reporter.