Outstanding Conservationist Award
Each year an individual, conservation organization, or others that demonstrate outstanding accomplishments with implementing conservation practices that improve Minnesota's natural resources are recognized in Freeborn County.
The Minnesota Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts with support from The Farmer magazine offers the Outstanding Conservationist Award each year and those recognized are honored during the MASWCD Annual Convention.
2022 Outstanding Conservationist
Pictured Left to Right: Charles, Shirley, Scott, & Dawn Lightly
Scott Lightly & Family
Scott and Dawn Lightly, along with Scott's parents, Charles and Shirley Lightly, operate their farm near Oakland, MN raising corn and soybeans while implementing cover crops and strip-till on all their acres. In 2012 they began tossing around ideas of switching to an improved soil health system. Through small trials, buying used equipment, building their own equipment, and networking the Lightly’s dove fully into strip-till and cover crops by 2017. With 6 years of experience under their belts implementing these practices, the Lightly’s have now been assisting with hosting soil health events, and teaching other farmers, agency employees, and ag professionals what they are doing on their farm. The Freeborn SWCD is fortunate to have a resource like the Lightly’s available promoting soil health!