Leopold Conservation Award
2013 California Leopold Conservation Award recipient Bob Giacomini of Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese Co.
There’s one vital group of Californians that perhaps gets praised the least for promoting a healthy environment across the state: landowners.
Because more than 50% of all land in California is privately owned, how these folks manage their properties has a dramatic and lasting effect on the environment — from climate change, to clean air and water, to wildlife. They are the front-line defenders in protecting the quality of our air and water, landscapes that protect people and wildlife alike, and ensuring a healthy climate for the state. Moreover, the fate of imperiled species, 90% of which make their homes on private land, largely rests in these individual’s hands.
Rewarding California Landowners for Sound Stewardship
That’s why in 2006 we teamed up with the Sand County Foundation — a Wisconsin-based nonprofit that works with landowners to improve wildlife and habitat nationally — and the California Farm Bureau Federation to co-sponsor the first-ever Leopold Conservation Award in California. Advancing sustainable land stewardship is something we’ve been championing for nearly two decades.
Dedicated to the spirit of world-renowned conservationist Aldo Leopold (author of A Sand County Almanac), the Leopold Conservation Award celebrates the extraordinary efforts of California farmers and ranchers to protect and restore the natural resources they preside over. Having become a resounding success in seven states — and here in the Golden State — the award also aims to inspire other would-be conservationists and promote a better understanding among the public about the important role landowners play in sustaining a healthy planet.
California Leopold Conservation Award information.
Keepers of the Land
Despite major challenges like incentives to develop their properties, the 2006-present Leopold Conservation Award winners and finalists below prove that promoting a healthy environment and a thriving farm and ranching economy can go hand in hand.