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Year Inducted: 2023

Region VI

Montague, CA



Hart Ranch, located in northern California, has a mission of building a sustainable, holistic property stewardship program that allows for equal economically viable ranching operations and wildlife habitat enrichment based on scientifically proven, environmentally sound management practices. The cow-calf operation, founded in 1852, is dedicated to landscape and watershed rejuvenation, demonstrating the tremendous positive impacts a well-managed cow herd and grazing program has on the environment. Through strategic partnerships with various organizations and state and federal agencies, the Hart family has improved on-farm water efficiency and soil health while simultaneously bettering anadromous fish species habitat through the voluntary dedication of senior, cold-spring water rights to critical streams. And they have integrated sustainable timber management with regenerative grazing practices to maximize carbon sequestration in Klamath River watershed headwater regions. These actions have benefited not only the endangered and non-threated species that call the Hart Ranch home, but also the Hart Ranch cow herd with increased carcass quality and yield grades in the final product.

“Stewardship is not just second nature, but a core value that ensures our livelihood, honors our heritage and provides an opportunity for future generations,” said Blair Hart with Hart Ranch. “We see our place as part of the ecosystem, not in spite of it.”


“The Hart family’s impact is reverberating beyond their own ranch as the community is recognizing the value of proactive conservation through the Harts’ leadership and is exploring their own paths to a more sustainable future,” said Ann Willis, California regional director of American Rivers. “Their community leadership and locally driven solutions are essential to creating the positive change we need to sustain the environment and help communities thrive.”

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