The Gibbons Family (William and Jeanette)
Cedar Breaks Ranch
Brookings, South Dakota

Over the past 28 years, William and Jeanette Gibbons and their family have devoted tremendous time and financial resources to restore degraded land and water on Cedar Breaks Ranch in Brookings, South Dakota.  Since the purchase of an initial 240 acres in 1989, the Gibbons developed their formerly overgrazed and eroded property into a showcase of how various conservation practices can be seamlessly and profitably integrated into a working farm, with 250 acres of cropland, 105 acres of riparian buffers, 160 acres of native prairie, and 80 acres of wetlands and ponds. The Gibbons’ remarkable achievements encouraged other landowners to incorporate regenerative agriculture into their own practices to build soil, expand biodiversity, and increase sustainability. They work with South Dakota State University to use their property to further research in natural resource management, wildlife, and conservation practices. They also host workshops and public tours for local and regional conservation organizations. In addition, several wildlife clubs sponsor youth hunting and fishing events at the Gibbons’ farm to introduce disadvantaged young people to conservation and the outdoors. In sharing their experiences and knowledge in conservation and natural resource management and offering diverse outdoors activities as well as research and instructional opportunities, the Gibbons’ have further inspired and educated their local community.