Steve is the co-founder and executive director of the Agricultural Watershed Institute (AWI), a nonprofit organization established in 2003. AWI’s mission is to conduct research and educational programs on practices and policies that improve water quality, maintain or restore ecosystem health, and conserve land and water resources in agricultural watersheds. Prior to AWI’s formation, Steve was an environmental consultant specializing in water quality planning.  From 1987 to 1995, he served on the Decatur (Illinois) City Council.  He serves on the steering committee of Green Land Blue Waters. He has a BA in Sociology from the University of Notre Dame.

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Agriculture in much of the Midwestern United States is dominated by farms that produce two annual row crops—corn and soybeans—and have no livestock. Such grain-only farming operations became the norm roughly between 1950 and 1970. They produce a bountiful harvest for many food and non-food uses, but are heavily reliant on fossil fuels. And, …

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