Former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue, the 70-year-old who in 2003 became the state’s first Republican governor in over a century, is reportedly the leading contender inside the Trump transition team to lead the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Through Mr. Perdue, the nation’s farmers and rural residents may find a willing companion to help push through reforms that the all-important voting bloc finds critical on a community level, including the new Farm Bill. Farmers helped Trump win some Midwestern counties by 15 percent over his opponent, Hillary Clinton.

A relative unknown outside the Peach State, here are three things to know about incoming USDA secretary Sonny Perdue:

He’s an agribusiness disciple and former veterinarian

The son of a teacher and farmer, Perdue went on to serve in the military and earn the rank of captain before becoming a Doctor of Veterinarian Medicine. He is said to have flown a crop duster as a youth, which put him in the wheelhouse of agribusiness early on. As the leader of USDA, he’ll be expected to help farmers obtain subsidies, while providing food inspection.

Interestingly, Perdue also worked as a vet for a period of time in the 1970s before going on to become a small business owner, and eventually state senator and governor.

While in the governor’s mansion, Perdue was able to secure at least $7.7 million in funding for a proposed Veterinary Medical Learning Center at the University of Georgia, his alma mater.

He switched from the Democratic Party in the ’90s

Gov. Perdue alongside Condoleezza Rice and other Republicans

Gov. Perdue alongside Condoleezza Rice and other Republicans

In 1998 while in the Georgia Senate, Mr. Perdue switched party allegiances from the Democrats to the Republicans ahead of his reelection bid, which he won handily.

Although the GOP did not enjoy the popularity of the Democratic Party across the state, this move fit into his right-leaning agenda, which included cutting waste in government and turning an inherited budget deficit into a state surplus. As governor Perdue created the Commission for a New Georgia, which enticed private citizens and business leaders to engineer new ideas for cost-effective measures for governance.

According to the Georgia Encyclopedia, Gov. Perdue came into office “with the goal of administering state government as a business enterprise,” putting him at eye level with Mr. Trump.

He is socially conservative

In addition to promoting fiscal responsibility, the Air Force vet is also a social conservative. As Georgia’s governor, he opposed same-sex marriage, enacted legislation intended to restrict illegal immigration, and famously prayed for rain during a dry spell in 2007.

In Georgia, the state’s agriculture business has grown to a $74 billion enterprise.

The federal position would require Perdue to oversea an organization that has come under fire for distributing assistance unevenly, thus allowing the government to manipulate the market rather than allowing free enterprise to dictate the direction of our nation’s food production.

Thus far, Mr. Perdue has been mum on his insights to the position.