WFAN Board Member Angie Carter Receives Fellowship

We are thrilled that our board member Angie Carter received a Toyota TogeterGreen Conservation fellowship to work with us in reaching out to farmland owners on a watershed-scale. Here’s what Angie has to say: Angie headshot

Nature usually doesn’t pay attention to property boundaries. Our water quality is impacted by what people do (or don’t do) upstream. Birds and animals migrate and wander. Iowa’s soil erodes and washes all the way to the Gulf of Mexico. To transform our agricultural landscape to one that is healthy for the soil, wildlife, and people, we need to work with our neighbors to make changes beyond the farmland border and consider the larger watershed.

This summer, WFAN will partner with the Raccoon River Watershed Association (RRWA), Pesticide Action Network, and the Audubon Society to do just that. I recently received a Toyota TogetherGreen Conservation fellowship that will fund work with farmland owners and community members. The project, “Watershed Stories: Grassroots Change in Iowa’s Raccoon River Watershed,” will focus on building conservation networks among farmers, landowners, and community members through a series of meetings, field days, and the creation of a leadership group. While I will work with both men and women farmland owners, this project will build upon WFAN’s Women Caring for the Land program to provide support for specific outreach to women farmland owners.

The Raccoon River in Iowa is one of Iowa’s most impaired waterways and presents a unique opportunity to engage communities in watershed-scale conservation. WFAN previously received a TogetherGreen Conservation Innovation Grant in 2012 that focused on peer-to-peer learning, land surveys, and consulting for women farmland owners interested in managing their land for bird habitat. Audubon and Toyota founded Toyota TogetherGreen in 2008 and invest in conservation pioneers and ideas that impact the environment on a national scale.

Angie Carter is a WFAN board member and currently a PhD candidate in sociology and sustainable agriculture at Iowa State University, where she studies women farmland owners and conservation decision-making.