Fellows selected for beginning farmer conservation program

Farm and Food

Teresa Hoffman, senior communications associate, teresah@cfra.org, 402.687.2100, ext. 1012

LYONS, NEBRASKA –  Participants for the 2022 Beginning Farmer Conservation Fellowship Program have been announced by the Center for Rural Affairs, in partnership with Big Muddy Urban Farm, Nebraska Sustainable Agriculture Society, and Metropolitan Community College Culinary, Hospitality, and Horticulture.

Conservation fellows include Kelsey Jones, of Winside/Norfolk, Mariel Barreras, of Blair, and Peter David, Tricey Sullivan, Kelly Alsup, Jazz Marr, Katie Bettin, and Claudia Patricia Pinto, all of Omaha.

The fellowship is a new program at the Center for Rural Affairs funded by the Natural Resources Conservation Service. The fellows will complete coursework in conservation programs and practices, climate change adaptation and impacts, racial equity, and leadership.

“Across Nebraska, farmers and ranchers are working to put in place working lands conservation practices, such as cover crops, rotational grazing, and pollinator habitats,” said Justin Carter, senior project associate with the Center. “These practices are vital to the health of our soil and environment while producing the food we need. We have recruited these beginning farmer fellows to learn a range of conservation practices through a curriculum we’ve developed with organizational partners and experts on climate change mitigation and resource management.”

Fellows will design and implement a conservation project on their own farm or land they are farming, and present at the annual Nebraska Sustainable Agriculture Conference on their findings in February. The program ends in February 2023.