The Conservation Technology Information Center (CTIC) has named Chad Watts its new Executive Director.

Watts joined CTIC in 2012 as project director, leading a range of highly successful conservation programs including the Indian Creek Watershed Project, the Great Lakes Cover Crop Initiative and the influential National Cover CropSurvey, which has been cited in Congressional testimony.

CTIC, based in West Lafayette, Ind., is a national public-private partnership that champions, promotes and provides information on farming systems that conserve and enhance soil, water, air and wildlife resources. For more than 30 years, CTIC has provided a forum for farmers, regulators, researchers, agribusiness leaders and conservation advocates to share ideas, collaborate on research and demonstration projects, and promote systems that help farmers become more economically and environmentally sustainable.

“Chad’s deep commitment to conservation agriculture and his experience with agricultural conservation systems, local capacity building, and bringing a wide range of interests together to develop programs that help farmers and the environment make him an outstanding choice for CTIC’s executive director,” says Lara Moody, senior director of stewardship and sustainability programs at The Fertilizer Institute and chair of CTIC’s board of directors. “Chad’s organizational skills and leadership will help CTIC implement its new strategic plan.”

Watts, an Indiana native, began his career in conservation with the Indiana Department of Natural Resources soon after graduating from Purdue University in 1994. He then moved to The Nature Conservancy, where he launched the 1.2 million acre Tippecanoe River Watershed Project, which he managed for 12 years before joining CTIC. Watts lives with his family near Winamac, Indiana, and is very active in his local community.

“It is an honor to be asked to step into the role of executive director of CTIC, and an opportunity to continue the great work of the executive directors that came before,” Watts says. “With a long history of partnership and collaboration, a dedicated board of directors, and a great staff, CTIC is continuing on the mission we have been pursuing for more than 30 years — bringing people and organizations together to help farmers adopt conservation systems that protect their profitability as well as the nation’s soil, water, air and wildlife resources.”

“Chad’s depth of diverse experiences and new ideas will keep CTIC growing well into the future” says Moody.