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NRCS – A Legacy of Conservation: 75 Years of Helping People Help the Land

Morning fog gave way to sunny skies yesterday in Hillsborough, New Jersey, on Earth Day as representatives from Duke Farms and NRCS met with families of Duke Farms employees, local leaders and members of the press to highlight the conservation work being done at the farm. Read more »

Rural Development in Tennessee Observes Earth Day by Planting Trees, Purifying Drinking Water

Planting trees is a very traditional way to celebrate Earth Day. Over the years the trees grow up to do many good things for the environment; filter water runoff before pollutants slip into streams, supply the oxygen we breathe and even reduce energy bills by cooling homes and businesses with their shade. Read more »

Rural Development is now on Twitter!

USDA Rural Development can now be found on Twitter at By following us you will receive updates with the latest information about Rural Development’s mission areas, including more than 40 housing, business and community infrastructure and facility programs.  This is account is intended to widen our communication and outreach to the online community, and provide the public with the most current information on rural events, programs, success stories, answers to commonly asked questions, and more.

Follow us today as Rural Development celebrates the 40th Anniversary of Earth Day.  Rural Development is planning over 40 activities, led by Under Secretary Dallas Tonsager, who will be in Woodland Park, Colorado, to participate in an event marking the use of funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to improve drinking water quality in a subdivision. Curtis Wiley will represent the department in Cochiti Pueblo, New Mexico at a dedication ceremony for a new water system.

Rural Development will also join 17 other USDA agencies today at the USDA Earth Day Festival in the People’s Garden located on the USDA Whitten Building grounds on the National Mall – 12th and Jefferson Drive.  There will be live entertainment, a truck farm, a working water system demonstration, and numerous children’s activities as well as exhibits.  USDA’s Earth Day Festival will run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.   We hope to see you there!

Remembering USDA’s Own

Fifteen years ago, USDA and all of America experienced a tragedy that shook us to the core and united us in ways that brought out the best in our country.  At 9:02 am Central Standard Time on April 19, 1995, a bomb exploded in the A.P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, killing 168 innocent people.  Ninety-eight victims were Federal employees.

Seven of those were members of the USDA family.  In honor of these seven victims, the Riverdale, MD, conference center was renamed “The Oklahoma City Memorial Conference Center” and a portrait titled “Heroes of America’s Harvest” has been permanently displayed outside the center since 2005. Read more »

Earth Day in Alaska-A time to Mark Progress on Improving the Quality of Rural Health

As America marks the 40th anniversary of the first Earth Day, it’s good to reflect on the real, positive affect USDA’s water program and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (Recovery Act) is having on rural Alaska.  Our Department, working with other Federal departments and the State, continues to fund projects to improve water quality across Alaska.  Here’s an example: Read more »

USDA Business Administrator Judith Canales Promotes Job Creation in New York State Through the Recovery Act

Bankers and economic development officials from across New York attended USDA Rural Development’s Lender Roundtable in Syracuse on April 8.  Sponsored by New York’s Rural Business Program, the event featured USDA Business and Cooperative Programs (B&I) Administrator Judith Canales. The Administrator emphasized the B&I Program’s desire to attract new lenders, while strengthening its existing lending relationships and creating jobs. Read more »