Ranchers Stewardship Alliance, Montana NRCS Announce Major Partnership

Nonprofit Receives $875,000 Award and Adds Staff Position for Geospatial Coordinator

Ranchers Stewardship Alliance (RSA) is proud to announce a significant partnership with the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) of Montana, a momentous step forward in private lands conservation and prioritized ranch resiliency efforts. This partnership, solidified by an $875,000 award, will enable RSA to collaborate with NRCS and relevant partners in accelerating conservation delivery across RSA’s geography.

Through the agreement, RSA and NRCS aim to strengthen their collaboration, promote local conservation actions, and engage with private landowners and the public in a more comprehensive manner. Via education, communication, and local community involvement, they aspire to foster a stronger connection between agriculture, grasslands, and conservation.

This partnership between RSA and NRCS will be aimed at meeting two large key objectives, outreach and locally driven conservation, with a focus on strategic and expeditious implementation:


RSA will work with local NRCS offices in organizing educational workshops, tours, and other outreach activities. This will include informing landowners of Farm Bill programs, providing technical assistance, and supporting management decisions for this landscape.

This partnership will also share locally driven conservation success stories and promote the positive impact of private working lands conservation for our local communities and ranch sustainability.

Locally Driven Conservation

Building upon their existing partnership, RSA and NRCS will explore new avenues for cooperative conservation. As a part of this effort, RSA will assist local NRCS staff in development of long-range plans (LRPs) and targeted implementation plans (TIPs) by utilizing the larger conservation partnerships RSA has built over the organization’s history.

Deeply committed to our region and the people on the land, RSA will collaborate with NRCS and relevant partners to promote conservation actions that are locally driven, locally developed, and locally delivered, ensuring a more effective and sustainable approach to conservation.


This agreement focuses on capacity building for RSA and the greater conservation landscape through the creation of a new position and support of the existing positions within the organization. RSA will be announcing the opening of a Geospatial Coordinator position in November 2023.

This partnership exemplifies the commitment of both RSA and NRCS to enhance the conservation of private lands while fostering greater public understanding and engagement with the critical role of agriculture and grasslands in our communities. Practicing land stewardship today for generations of tomorrow, RSA is both excited and privileged to utilize this five-year NRCS agreement to the benefit of our region’s ranches and broader conservation community.

(photo above: 2021 Soil Health Tour, a collaborative effort of RSA and NRCS)

The Ranchers Stewardship Alliance (RSA) is a rancher-led, grassroots organization, dedicated to improving the quality of life for rural communities throughout the Northern Great Plains. Through collaborative conservation projects, rancher education events, and local community outreach, Ranchers Stewardship Alliance works to strengthen our rural community, economy, and culture for generations to come.

Through voluntary conservation programs, Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) helps producers, soil and water conservation districts, and other partners protect and conserve natural resources on private lands throughout the United States. With approximately 2,300 Service Centers in communities nationwide, NRCS and other USDA employees work side-by-side with producers in every State and territory.


Anne Johnson, DVM 
The First State Bank of Malta