The Oklahoma Tribal Conservation Advisory Council (OTCAC) and the Oklahoma leadership for the agencies of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) hosted a successful Nation to Nation Tribal Consultation on Tuesday August 21, at the Citizen Potawatomi Nation Grand Casino Hotel and Resort in Shawnee, Oklahoma.
The seventh annual meeting and consultation featured leaders from several of Oklahoma’s sovereign nations, leaders from USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Farm Service Agency (FSA), Rural Development (RD), and the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS). Other leaders from various state and tribal agencies were also in attendance. Tribal leaders had the opportunity to discuss which USDA programs are working well, and which are not working well, with several agency heads including NRCS State Conservationist Gary O’Neill, Rural Development State Director Dr. Lee Denney, and NASS Regional Director Wil Hundl.
“This meeting was once again successful in bringing together leaders from USDA, Oklahoma’s sovereign tribes, and the State of Oklahoma to discuss agriculture and the issues facing Native Americans who farm and ranch,” said Dr. Carol Crouch, NRCS State Tribal Liaison. “The more opportunities we have to discuss these agricultural issues facing our native farmers and ranchers, the more opportunities the various USDA agencies will have to improve their relationships and better serve those traditionally underserved farmers and ranchers.”
Plans are already underway for the next Nation to Nation Tribal Consultation in 2019.