Between President Trump’s proposed budget cuts to conservation and the administration’s push to “encourage private sector conservation planning,” it’s more important than ever that conservation leaders contact their members of Congress.

NACD has created a new Grassroots Advocacy webpage stocked with information and templates to help you contact Congress and advocate for issues important to conservation districts.

Right now, it is critical Congress hears directly from you why Conservation Technical Assistance (CTA) funding is crucial to this country’s conservation delivery system. If CTA were to be eliminated or severely reduced, it would drastically hinder the ability of conservation districts and our partners to deliver conservation assistance in communities nationwide. Whether you serve on your local district board, are a landowner who has benefited from technical assistance, or are just someone who cares about conserving our natural resources, Congress needs to hear from you. For more talking points, click here.


NACD Northeast Region Representative and Policy Specialist Eric Hansen (pictured) attended the New England Leadership Meeting last week in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. The meeting brought together conservation leaders from across the six New England states – Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island – to discuss on-going district work and challenges.

The meeting also included presentations on region-wide resource concerns, including Lake Champlain and the Long Island Sound. 


Over the next 14 weeks, 45 states and 9 Canadian provinces will hold their own Envirothon competitions leading up to the international NCF-Envirothon this July. This week, state Envirothon competitions will be held in three states: Alabama, April 6-8; Texas, April 8-10; and Wisconsin, April 7. Last week and earlier this week, state-wide winning teams were named in South Dakota (Rapid City FFA Team), Georgia, and Arizona (Tri-City College Prep School Team, pictured).

If you or someone you know has participated in or volunteered for Envirothon, NACD wants to hear your stories! Please contact Director of Development Melisa Augusto to learn how you can have your story featured in an upcoming edition of eResource.


USDA’s Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program has accumulated over 1,500 images of cover crops and soil health. You are free to download and disseminate these photos as part of your district’s educational outreach efforts. In addition to SARE’s Cover Crop Image Library, the program also offers educators and producers free, ready-made PowerPoint presentations on cover crop topics and soil health illustrations. You can check them all out here.

And for resources on cover crops from SARE, click here.

Together, the Willis family joined the NACD Soil Health Champions Network back in 2015 – each playing a role in their operation and also promoting soil health in their community, state, and region. Ron and Nancy, along with their sons Michael and Matthew, farm near King City, Missouri, with a diverse crop rotation of corn, soybeans, wheat, cereal rye, oats, and winter barley. Their specific rotation choices have served to break up certain cycles of pests and weeds. Additional practices include no-till farming for erosion control and build-up of organic matter and cover crops – which can be grazed in the fall and winter.

This past November, Michael was a guest speaker at the Kansas Rural Center’s annual conference held in Manhattan, Kansas – sharing his experience using a roller-crimper for cover crop control on terraced ground as part of a Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) grant he received. Later in February, Ron and Michael participated in a producer panel at a cover crop and soil health meeting in St. Joseph, MO – speaking directly to their peers on what worked well on their farm when implementing cover crops and no-till.

To get to know a bit more about the Willis family and their operation, be sure to check out their profile online. If you or someone you know is interested in soil health and would like to become a member of this growing, progressive network, please contact NACD North Central Region Representative Beth Mason at or 317-946-4463 for more information.

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