Clean Water Farm

The Clean Water Farm/Bay Friendly Award is sponsored by the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation. This award is given to recognize and thank Virginia farmers who implement nutrient management plans and are exemplary in their protection of the state’s soil and water quality. These individuals are role models who encourage others’ stewardship. Farmers spend time, energy and hard-earned money carrying out conservation practices that benefit many people. They themselves benefit because nutrients, pesticides, and chemicals they invest in remain with the land where they’re most productive. The soil necessary to grow crops also stays put because of conservation planting techniques. When these potential pollutants are kept out of surface and ground waters, citizens benefit by having cleaner water for drinking, recreation, industry, wildlife and transportation. On a local level, each District can nominate one farmer per river basin to win a certificate of recognition signed by the governor and a sign to post at their farm for this award. Above and beyond the local award, one farmer or farm from each of Virginia’s 10 major river basins is chosen for outstanding management that improves water quality. These 10 winners receive an additional award presented at a special recognition ceremony; one winner will then be chosen as a state winner.

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Tidewater SWCD Clean Water Farm Awards

2022 Clean Water Farm Award - Winner Roger & Dustin Calhoun (Custom)

2022 Clean Water Farm Award Winner Roger Calhoun of Carlton & Calhoun Farms, Inc.

2022 Clean Water Farm Award Winner

Roger Calhoun of Carlton & Calhoun Farms, Inc. has been farming for 41 years. Upon graduating from high school in 1981, Roger and his brother, Steven, struck up a partnership with their “Papa”, William H. Carlton. Their operation consisted of raising hogs, cattle, grain crops, hay and logging operations.
Around 1997, due to economic reasons, the decision was made to no longer raise livestock. In 2007, Roger became sole owner of the farming operation, which was incorporated as Carlton & Calhoun Farms, Inc.

Roger attributes becoming a farmer to his “Papa,” William H. Carlton, who can be credited for Roger’s desire and passion for farming. The Carlton portion of the business name “Carlton & Calhoun Farms, Inc.” is in honor of William H. Carlton. Roger feels blessed he had Mr. Carlton’s teaching, training, and being able to witness his Papa’s compassion for being a farmer.
Roger inherited that compassion and work ethic to pass it on by teaching his son and grandsons the benefit of utilizing Best Management Practices. He has all of his acres in Tidewater District signed up for continuous no-till. Roger split applies his nitrogen on corn and small grains to minimize runoff to our waterways. He maintains grass buffers around his fields to minimize nutrient and soil loss. Roger also utilizes crop rotation practices and cover crops .

Roger currently has the privilege of farming alongside his son, Dustin Calhoun. Dustin has worked fulltime for Carlton & Calhoun Farms, Inc. since graduating from college. The farm has one other fulltime employee, Peachie Brown, Jr., who has been employed by the farm for over 35 years. Roger looks forward to the day when he passes his legacy, Carlton & Calhoun Farms, Inc, on to Dustin and his two sons. Tidewater Soil and Water Conservation District is proud to honor the values passed down from William H. Carlton by awarding Roger Calhoun of Carlton & Calhoun Farms, Inc. the 2022 Tidewater Clean Water Farm Award.

2021 Clean Water Farm Award – Chairman, Jason Bray presents the 2021 CWFA to Charles Rich of Richland Farms

2021 Forestry BMP Award – Chairman, Jason Bray Presents Tidewater Forestry BMP Award to John & Jane Elkins of Hunters, LLC & Bigfoot, LLC

Clean Water Farm Award 2020 – Conservation & Education Specialist, Sam Markwith presents Jason Benton of Benton Farms, Inc.