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A Legacy of Cooperation- Originally established by Congress in 1935 as the Soil Conservation Service (SCS), NRCS has expanded to become a conservation leader for all natural resources, ensuring private lands are conserved, restored, and more resilient to environmental challenges, like climate change.

Seventy percent of the land in the United States is privately owned, making stewardship by private landowners absolutely critical to the health of our Nation’s environment.

NRCS works with landowners through conservation planning and assistance designed to benefit the soil, water, air, plants, and animals that result in productive lands and healthy ecosystems.

About North Dakota NRCS- North Dakota Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) takes pride in the delivery of conservation assistance to thousands of private landowners, offering financial and technical assistance on a competitive basis to eligible producers through many programs and special initiatives. Assistance provided through these programs and initiatives is intended to ensure that private lands are conserved, restored, and made more resilient to environmental challenges.

With field offices located in most North Dakota counties, NRCS tailors its programs to meet the specific needs of any private landowner in the state. This legacy of local conservation planning has helped NRCS establish itself as a leader in natural resource conservation. Working cooperatively with its clients throughout the state, NRCS programs and services benefit the soil, water, air, plants, and animals, resulting in productive lands and healthy ecosystems.

In addition to its financial assistance programs, NRCS has a strong technical knowledge capacity including Soils, Engineering, and Conservation Planning.  NRCS hosts the Soil Survey Program, the PLANTS database, 27 Plant Materials Centers (PMC), including one in Bismarck, ND.  The Soil Survey produces information beneficial to producers wanting to acquire skills necessary to understand, manage, conserve, and sustain their soil resources. The PMC offers technical assistance for native landscaping, windbreaks, improving land productivity, and enhancing wildlife habitat and wetlands.

Mary Podoll, North Dakota State ConservationistMeet Your State Conservationist - Mary Podoll has over 27 years of experience working at NRCS. She began her career as a Soil Conservationist, and later became a District Conservationist in Southwest Oklahoma. She also served as a Resource Conservationist in South Dakota, and then as Assistant Director of the Pacific Islands area. Ms. Podoll spent four years as an Area Conservationist in New Mexico and then traveled east to serve as the Director for the East National Technology Support Center. Earning the role State Conservationist in North Dakota was both humbling and exciting.

Raised on a wheat, corn, and cattle farm in Southwest Nebraska, Ms. Podoll became interested in pursuing a career with agriculture and resource conservation at a young age. She is a graduate of Oklahoma State University where she received her Bachelor of Science degree in agronomy and soils.