(Wyoming Stock Growers Association)
CHEYENNE, Wyo. – In celebration of Earth Day, Wyoming Governor Matt Mead will proclaim June 21, 2017 as Wyoming Environmental Stewardship Day. Governor Mead signed the proclamation during a ceremony on Friday, April 21 in his formal office.
Each year, Wyoming Environmental Stewardship Day marks the date of the Environmental Stewardship Tour hosted by the Wyoming Stock Growers Association (WSGA) and the Wyoming Department of Agriculture (WDA). The annual event showcases the Wyoming Leopold Conservation Award® recipient’s environmental stewardship efforts. The 2017 recipient of the award is the Garrett Ranch, a sustainable and profitable cow/calf ranch south of Casper.
Owned and managed by the Garrett family, the Garrett Ranch is located 30 miles south of Casper. The entire Garrett family including Pete and Ethel Garrett, their children and grandchildren show their continued dedication to outstanding, voluntary conservation and sets an example for landowners across Wyoming and the United States. The original homestead is located on Bates Creek about 8 miles upstream from the current operation. Currently, the Garretts raise Hereford cows, the original breed bought in 1937 when the ranch started with 100 head of cattle, and raise 200 acres of alfalfa.
“We are honored to win this award,” stated Pete Garrett. “We know many other ranches who are just as deserving. We are very humbled.”
“Ranchers know that we must take care of the land. My great-grandfather always said that where you find one blade of grass, leave two,” said Governor Mead. “The Environmental Stewardship Tour and Leopold Conservation Award celebrate those who have truly left more for future generations, all the while feeding the country and preserving our open spaces and ranching heritage.”
“It’s a privilege each year to recognize a deserving landowner for their continued dedication to the land,” states Haley Lockwood, WSGA Communications & Programs Director. “It’s sometimes a strange concept for landowners to be recognized as the value they hold in the land and its natural resources is so high that without them the ranching lifestyle would be non-existent. Stewardship is nothing new to Wyoming ranchers.”
The Leopold Conservation Award is presented by Sand County Foundation and WSGA.
It is given in honor of renowned conservationist and author Aldo Leopold, who called for an ethical relationship between people and the land they own and manage. Award applicants are judged based on their demonstration of improved resource conditions, innovation, long-term commitment to stewardship, sustained economic viability, community and civic leadership, and multiple use benefits.
“Pete and Ethel Garrett have devoted decades to patient effort on noxious weed control and thousands of hours of meetings as original members of their local sage-grouse working group,” noted Sand County Foundation President Kevin McAleese. “In these and a hundred other often thankless ways, they have improved wildlife habitat and kept their ranch profitable.”
The $10,000 award, and a crystal depicting Aldo Leopold, will be presented to the family at WSGA’s Cattle Industry Convention & Trade Show Awards Luncheon Friday, June 9 in Buffalo, WY at the Bomber Mountain Civic Center.
The Leopold Conservation Award® in Wyoming is made possible through the support of The Monaghan Foundation, Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association, World Wildlife Fund and Rocky Mountain Power.
For more information or to attend the Environmental Stewardship Tour of the Garrett Ranch on June 21st, please call the Wyoming Stock Growers Association at 307-638-3942 or visit www.wysga.org.
ABOUT THE LEOPOLD CONSERVATION AWARD® -The Leopold Conservation Award® is a competitive award that recognizes landowner achievement in voluntary conservation. The award consists of a crystal depicting Aldo Leopold and $10,000. Sand County Foundation presents Leopold Conservation Awards in California, Colorado, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Texas, Utah, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
ABOUT 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 THE WYOMING STOCK GROWERS ASSOCIATION-Since 1872, the Wyoming Stock Growers Association has served the livestock business and families of Wyoming by protecting their economic, legislative, regulatory, judicial, environmental, custom and cultural interests. We promote the role of the cattle industry in resource stewardship, animal care and the production of high-quality, safe and nutritious beef. Learn more at www.wysga.org or call 307-638-3942.