Nominations Open for the 2023 CA Leopold Conservation Award

Doug and daughter Jennifer Beretta of Beretta Family Dairy, 2022 California Leopold Conservation Award recipients. Photo: Paolo Vescia.

Are you a California farmer, rancher, or forestland owner who improves soil health, water quality, and wildlife habitat on your working land? Apply for the 2023 California Leopold Conservation Award®

The Award

Sand County Foundation, Sustainable Conservation, California Farm Bureau Federation, and national sponsor American Farmland Trust present the Leopold Conservation Award to private landowners in 25 states for extraordinary achievement in voluntary conservation. The California Leopold Conservation Award will be presented at the California Farm Bureau Federation’s Annual Meeting in December. The recipient will receive $10,000 and an Aldo Leopold crystal.

Given in honor of renowned conservationist Aldo Leopold, the award recognizes landowners who inspire others with their exemplary dedication to land, water, and wildlife habitat management on private, working lands. In his influential 1949 book, “A Sand County Almanac,” Leopold called for an ethical relationship between people and the land they own and manage.

“As we deal with the intense fallout of the state’s recent storms, and the toll on our communities, our collective conservation ethic must guide how we build a climate-resilient future for our state. California landowners are on the front lines of environmental stewardship. The Leopold Conservation Award celebrates these inspiring individuals and families, and we hope farmers, ranchers and other private landowners come forward this year to be recognized.” – Ashley Boren, Sustainable Conservation CEO

Apply Now!

You can submit your own nomination, or you can nominate someone you know in your community who’s modeling the kind of resource stewardship we all aspire to! Click here for Sand County Foundation’s application form.

Reading your conservation stories is one of the true highlights of our year, and we can’t wait to learn about more amazing land and resource stewards across California. The application deadline date is July 18, 2023. Email applications to [email protected]. Please contact us if you’d like to mail in your application: [email protected]

For more information on the award, visit If you have any questions about the process, including specific application questions, please feel free to reach out: [email protected]

The first California Leopold Conservation Award recipient was selected in 2006. Beretta Family Dairy of Santa Rosa received the award in 2022.

The Leopold Conservation Award in California is made possible thanks to the generous support of American Farmland Trust, Sustainable Conservation, California Farm Bureau Federation, Sand County Foundation, The Harvey L. & Maud C. Sorensen Foundation, Farm Credit, The Nature Conservancy in California, McDonald’s, and California LCA recipient alumni.