SANDY, Utah – (November 28, 2016) - Sand County Foundation in partnership with Western AgCredit, Utah Farm Bureau Federation, and the Utah Cattlemen’s Association are proud to name Jerrold Richins as the recipient of the prestigious Utah Leopold Conservation Award®. Jerrold and his family own a cattle and sheep ranch in Summit County.
Jerrold was the first landowner to begin working with organizations to install erosion control structures along sections of the creek on his land, as well as fencing off his livestock. At the time, nearly every landowner in the area rejected the idea of trying such measures to save the creek, but Jerrold’s participation catalyzed many other landowners who began to follow suit after they saw the benefits on Jerrold’s land.
The stream conservation efforts directly contributed to restoring the natural bend and habitat suitability of the stream. Chalk Creek is home to one of the few remaining, intact pure-strain Bonneville Cutthroat Trout populations, and the improvements Jerrold championed over the years has had lasting effects on the success of this critical population.
Given in honor of renowned conservationist Aldo Leopold, the Leopold Conservation Award recognizes extraordinary achievement in voluntary conservation. It inspires other landowners through these examples and provides a visible forum where farmers, ranchers and other private landowners are recognized as conservation leaders. In his influential 1949 book, A Sand County Almanac, Leopold called for an ethical relationship between people and the land they own and manage, which he called “an evolutionary possibility and an ecological necessity.”
The Leopold Conservation Award honors Utah landowner achievement in voluntary stewardship and management of natural resources. Jerrold and his family were presented with a crystal award and $10,000 at the Utah Farm Bureau Federation’s Annual Convention in Layton on November 18.
“Western AgCredit congratulates Jerrold Richins for winning this prestigious award in recognition of his impressive conservation efforts on his ranch. Conservationist Aldo Leopold made the following challenge to stewards of the land: ‘Examine each question in terms of what is ethically and aesthetically right, as well as what is economically expedient.’ Jerrold has achieved this critical balance,” said David Brown, President of Western AgCredit.
“We are extremely proud of the Richins family and the pride they take in the land and natural resources in their care,” said Ron Gibson, President of the Utah Farm Bureau Federation. “The Richins’ are an example of the conservation ethic found in Utah’s farmers and ranchers, and we salute them for their efforts. His visionary efforts to preserve and enhance streambeds in Summit County was ahead of his time, and we’re proud of his work on proactively managing the delicate balance of livestock, wildlife, and our natural resources.”
“It is exciting to see the passion, along with the amount of effort and cost, that landowners put towards good stewardship of their land. Jerrold and his family have a rich history of caring for the land and water resources,” said Brent Tanner, Executive Vice President, Utah Cattlemen's Association.
The Leopold Conservation Award in Utah is made possible through the support of Western AgCredit, The Nature Conservancy, Utah Farm Bureau Federation, Producers Livestock Marketing, Utah Department and Agriculture and Food, Utah Wool Growers Association, Utah Cattlemen’s Association and Utah Association of Conservation Districts.
ABOUT THE LEOPOLD CONSERVATION AWARD
The Leopold Conservation Award is a competitive award that recognizes landowner achievement in voluntary conservation. The award consists of $10,000 and a crystal depicting Aldo Leopold. Sand County Foundation presents Leopold Conservation Awards in California, Colorado, Kansas, Kentucky, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Wisconsin and Wyoming.ABOUT SAND COUNTY FOUNDATIONABOUT SAND COUNTY FOUNDATION
Sand County Foundation (www.sandcountyfoundation.org) is a non-profit conservation organization dedicated to working with private landowners across North America to advance ethical and scientifically sound land management practices that benefit the environment.
ABOUT WESTERN AgCREDIT
Western AgCredit is the leader within the agricultural finance industry with over 90 years of lending to farmers in the Intermountain West. It currently serves approximately 1,700 customers with a full range of credit and financial services, as well as providing financial and volunteer support to several agricultural and community activities, including, among others, Utah Farm Bureau, Utah Cattlemen’s Association, FFA and 4-H.
ABOUT UTAH FARM BUREAU
The Utah Farm Bureau is the largest general farm and ranch organization in the state with more than 29,747 member families. Its mission is to improve economic opportunities for the state’s farmers and ranchers, ensure America’s food security, protect the natural resources of our state, and improve the overall quality of life in the sate and nation through political action, educational and informational means. Learn more at www.utahfarmbureau.org.
ABOUT UTAH CATTLEMEN’S ASSOCIATION
The Utah Cattlemen’s Association (UCA) has represented Utah cattle producers since 1870, preserving the heritage and strength of the industry through education and public policy and by supporting and establishing the adoption of good principles of raising and marketing cattle and caring for the land we ranch on. Efforts are made possible through membership contributions.