The 2018 Farm Bill includes provisions that address the unique circumstances and concerns of socially disadvantaged, beginning, limited resource, and veteran farmers and ranchers. The 2018 Farm Bill provides for voluntary participation, offers incentives, and focuses on equity in accessing USDA programs and services.
What is the Civil Rights Advisory Committee?
The committee serves in an advisory capacity providing management and employees with a vehicle that enhances and fulfills their equal employment opportunity and program delivery responsibilities.
Historically Underserved Communities
Some groups of people are identified in Farm Bill legislation and in USDA policy as being historically underserved, including farmers or ranchers who are: beginning, socially disadvantaged, military veterans and limited resource
Special Emphasis Program Managers are responsible for planning and implementing programs and providing awareness to improve employment and advancement opportunities for minority groups. Special Emphasis Program Manager positions are collateral duty positions and are under the direct supervision of the NRCS state conservationist.
Special Emphasis Program Manager are also responsible for: Analyzing challenges facing underrepresented groups within the agency and try to help find possible solutions; Maintaining educational and training information; Sponsoring programs to increase awareness; and Assisting in a diversified recruitment effort in Tennessee.
CRAC Advisors and Officers
CRAC Special Emphasis Program Managers
American Indian/Alaskan Native SEPM
M. Cody Brown
Asian American/Pacific Islander SEPM
PH: 931-728-2472, x3
Katherine K. Burse
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender SEPM
Soil Conservationist/Term: FY2020-2023
Area Resource Conservationist/Term: FY 2020-2023
Program Support Specialist/Term: FY 2021-2024
State Agronomist/Term: FY 2019-2022
Area Resource Soil Scientist/Term: FY 2019-2022
Special Emphasis Months
- January - Martin Luther King Commemoration
- February - African American History Month
- March - Womens History Month
- April/May - Holocaust Remembrance Day
- May - Cinco de Mayo/Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month
- June - LGBTQ Pride Month
- August 26 - Women's Equality Day
- September - Hispanic Heritage Month
- October - National Disability Month
- November - American Indian Alaska Native Heritage Month
Related Links and Resources
- NRCS National Headquarters, Washington, DC Civil Rights Division
- Special Emphasis Programs
- Mentoring Program
- Wisconsin NRCS Outreach Efforts
- U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission: About the EEOC, Facts about Employment Discrimination, Filing a Charge, Enforcement and Litigation, Technical Assistance Program, Related sites.
- Office of the U.S. Attorney General, Civil Rights Division: Mission, Special Issues, Speeches, Selected Cases and Briefs, Newsletter, Directory.
NRCS employees and applicants for employment who feel they have been discriminated against should contact:
USDA-FPAC Business Center
Civil Rights and EEO Division
Main Line: 202-572-5826
Second Line: 816-926-2608
An EEO Counselor/Mediator will be assigned by the Director of the Office of CR.
In accordance with Federal civil rights law and USDA civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity (including gender expression), sexual orientation, disability, age, marital status, family/parental status, income derived from a public assistance program, political beliefs, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity, in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA (not all bases apply to all programs). Remedies and complaint filing deadlines vary by program or incident.
Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.) should contact the responsible Agency or USDA's TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TTY) or contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English.
To file a program discrimination complaint, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, AD-3027, found online at How to File a Program Discrimination Complaint and at any USDA office or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by: (1) mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20250-9410; (2) fax: (202) 690-7442; or (3) email: email@example.com.