NEW Longleaf & the Landowner Academy kicks off in 2023

February 9, 2023

In January, The Longleaf Alliance and the National Wildlife Federation introduced a new Academy type – Longleaf & the Landowner.

We were thrilled to work with the 2022 Gjerstad/Johnston Landowner of the Year award winner, Herbert Hodges and the Willie Hodges Estate Family Farm, who opened the doors to the farm that has been in the family since the 1890s to hold the 3-day event.

The course was designed with underserved landowners and land stewards in mind. The ~40 attendees learned about site preparation, longleaf and fire, planting techniques, managing for wildlife habitat, a historical perspective on black land loss and retention in the South, heirs property concerns, and connecting with resources to guide a landowner through the myriad of cost-share programs and other types of assistance and guidance available.

Academy graduates completed the week with palpable enthusiasm to continue learning, and we look forward to working with partners around the range to bring this program, and ones like it, to additional communities in the longleaf range!

We couldn’t have done this without the expertise provided by our partners: the U.S. Forest Service, Georgia Forestry Commission, Wildlife Resources Division - Georgia DNR, Natural Resources Conservation Service, Georgia Heirs Property Law Center, Center for Heirs' Property Preservation, Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership, McIntosh Seed., and the Longleaf for All working group under America's Longleaf Restoration Initiative.