Larry Clemens grew up in America’s Farm Belt, where he learned at a young age how the lands and waters connect us and how agriculture touches every part of our lives — a valuable lesson that has served him well since he first joined the Conservancy in 1992.
The Director of North America’s Agriculture Program since December 2014, Larry is helping to guide the comprehensive approach to agriculture and conservation by
- advancing legislative policy like the farm bill;
- developing partnerships with like minded NGOs, agencies, universities and businesses; and
- scaling up adoption of practices like cover crops, conservation tillage and nutrient management.
Ultimately, Larry’s goal is to provide farmers a means to meet the growing demand for food production while protecting critical lands and waters for both people and nature. His 20+ years with the Conservancy has more than prepared him for this challenge.
Staying close to his Hoosier roots, Larry first served as the Indiana state program’s Upper St. Joseph River director and then as the agricultural team lead for the U.S. Central Region. In both these positions, he worked with farmers and other partners in the agriculture community (both in the U.S. and Brazil) to develop strategies for sustainable farming techniques and helping to reduce sedimentation and nutrient runoff in rivers.
Most recently, Larry was Assistant State Director for Conservation in the Conservancy’s Indiana program, responsible for the strategic planning and management of the chapter’s conservation efforts.
Larry serves on the Conservation Technology Information Center’s Board of Directors and is also a member of the Indiana State Soil Conservation Board, which provides oversight and direction for the Clean Water Program in Indiana.
When he’s not working, Larry enjoys spending time with his wife, Mercedes, and their kids, Christopher and Maria, at home in Angola, Indiana.