Established in 1991, the Environmental Stewardship Award Program (ESAP) provides an opportunity for the beef industry to showcase the stewardship, conservation and business practices that work together on farms and ranches.

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Environmental Stewardship Award

ESAP Award History

Now in its 30th year, the Environmental Stewardship Award has annually recognized the outstanding stewardship practices and conservation achievements of U.S. cattle producers from across the nation. Regional and national award winners have been commended for their commitment to protecting the environment and improving fish and wildlife habitats while operating profitable cattle operations. The common trait among all winners is the desire to leave the land in better shape for future generations while also inspiring the next generation of land stewards.

While the program highlights stewardship, it also provides fellow cattle producers with examples and ideas which may be useful on their own farm and ranching operations.

Nominations can be submitted by any organization, group, or individual on behalf of a U.S. cattle producer. In the past, nominations have been submitted by a diverse mix of organizations. A partial list includes: The Nature Conservancy, NRCS, Society for Range Management, state games and parks services, state extension services, universities, wildlife organizations, and all types of livestock groups.

Environmental Stewardship Award winners are selected annually by the Environmental Stewardship Award Selection Committee, a group of representatives from universities, conservation organizations and federal and state agencies. For guidance, the judges consider the management of water, wildlife, vegetation, air, and soil along with leadership abilities and the sustainability of the business as a whole.

Nominees will be competing for one of seven regional awards based on their state of residency. After the application deadline, the Environmental Stewardship Award Selection Committee meets to decide upon the regional winners. From the regional winners, one national winner is then selected later in the year.

The Environmental Stewardship Award Program was established in 1991 by the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and is made possible by the generous sponsorship of Corteva Agriscience, the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) of the United States Department of Agriculture, McDonald's and the US Fish and Wildlife Service.

Announcing the 2021 regional winners!

October 18, 2021

Pull up a chair, gather your crew and join us for the announcement of the 2021 Regional Environmental Stewardship Award Winners. You and your family will enjoy hearing each of these unique regional winner stories. You may even gain tips and tricks that you can apply on your very own operations! Watch NCBA's Cattlemen to Cattlemen on RFD TV or join us on our website to see this year's 2021 Regional Winners!

"As individuals, we have limited resources... aid in keeping the "wolves" such as government, environmental and radical groups, off of our door steps. NCBA is there every day protecting our industry."

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Mark Spurgin
Nebraska Rancher