Our Small Farmer Award is named after the NOPBNRCSE Founder, Mr. Lloyd E. Wright
Background - Lloyd E. Wright is a retired United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) employee, born on May 28, 1941 in Montross, Virginia. He grew up on a family-owned soybean, corn, and wheat farm in southeast Virginia.
Experience - During his 37 years of employment with USDA, he served as the Director of the Office of Civil Rights at National Headquarters in Washington, DC. Prior to this position, he was Director of the Conservation Operations Division in the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). He also served as Director of the Community Assistance Resource Development Division and the Watershed Protection Division in NRCS. Other positions with NRCS include State Resource Conservationist, and Area, District, and Soil Conservationist. He served for one year as a Legislative Assistant to Senator Tom Harkin where he drafted a bill to stabilize land prices, and one year on an IPA assignment with the State of New York, Department of Agriculture and Markets where he developed a land evaluation system to tax farmland. He is the principal author of the USDA Land Evaluation and Site Assessment (LESA) System. The LESA system is used as the criteria in the Farmland Protection Policy Act (FPPA) and to protect farmland from conversion to non-agricultural uses. He has also provided national leadership in NRCS on urban conservation programs to include the erosion control in urban areas, urban water quality, urban flood plain and wetland protection. He has provided leadership at the national, state, and local levels of government in the development of programs and projects to create jobs while protecting and improving natural resources.
He spent three weeks in the People’s Republic of China, providing assistance on land use planning, farmland protection, and land evaluation and site assessment. He provided assistance to South Africa on Land Care during a four-week trip in that country. He made recommendations on projects that would create jobs, improve the environment, and lead to long-term employment.
Professional – He is a member of the Soil Conservation Society of America and the American Planning Association. He is a Founder and life member of the National Organization of Professional Black Natural Resources Conservation Service Employees, and served two terms as the first president of the Organization.
Education – Has a B.S. in Agronomy from Virginia State University, and a M.S. in Human Resources Management from State University of New York at Binghamton.
Significant Awards/Acknowledgements – In addition, to numerous USDA and non USDA awards, in 1974, he received the USDA Superior Service Award for management of a field office and in 1983 received the USDA Superior Service Award for the design of a national Land Evaluation and Site Assessment (LESA) System.