The Hank Stone family of Woodland, Calif., owners of the Yolo Land & Cattle Company were named the 2008 National Environmental Stewardship Award Winner at the Cattle Industry Convention in Reno, Nev. Now in its 17th year, the award is sponsored by the National Cattlemen's Foundation, NCBA, Dow AgroSciences, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.
"Recognizing the importance of sustainability has allowed the family to collaborate with multiple local, state, and national groups to restore hundreds of acres of grasslands, riparian habitat, and stock ponds with California native flora," says Dave Petty, chairman of the selection committee. "Yolo Land & Cattle Company has served as leaders in the industry and a model of innovation. By placing large portions of their land into conservation easements, the family ensures the future of the operation for generations to come."
Yolo Land & Cattle Company use rotational grazing, CRP grazing and invasive weed control, and have created the largest vegetative management plan in the state of California through a partnership with the California Audubon Society and the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.
"Environmental stewardship and conservation are at the forefront of our industry," says Bob Josserand, chairman of the National Cattlemen’s Foundation Board of Trustees. "This year’s national winner, the Hank Stone Family of California, is a great example for others to follow. I have no doubt that they will continue to be strong proponents of conservation and serve as excellent role models for producers across the country."