The Texas Agricultural Land Trust (TALT) has announced the appointment of former Congressman Mike Conaway to TALT’s board of directors.
Conaway retired from Congress in 2020 after serving eight terms as U.S. Representative from District 11 in West Texas. Prior to his election to Congress, Conaway was a certified public accountant for more than 30 years in both public and private practice. He is also a founding principal of the Conaway Graves Group, a federal affairs advocacy and reputation management firm.
“Having served in the U.S. House of Representatives for 16 years including chairing the House Agricultural Committee, Mike brings a new dynamic to the board,” TALT Board Chairman David Crow said in a news release. “His legislative experience and accounting background will be invaluable to TALT as we continue to increase our presence in the world of conservation to promote open lands and the agricultural operations that support them.”
Conaway was instrumental in passing the 2008 and 2014 Farm Bills through Congress as a member of the House Agricultural Committee. He later served as chairman of that key committee and led the effort to develop and enact the 2018 Farm Bill. The 2018 Farm Bill was passed with the largest vote margin for any Farm Bill re-authorization in history. Conaway is looking forward to working with other board members to further TALT’s mission of conserving the Texas heritage of agricultural lands, wildlife habitats and natural resources.
“The caliber of TALT board members is exceptional, and I am honored to be asked to join,” Conaway said in the release. “I’ve been following the evolution of the organization since its inception and the groundwork that’s been laid to conserve rural Texas is laudable. Conservation easements are an important tool to conserve working lands in Texas, and I look forward to doing what I can to promote them across the state. There are so many competing interests and having another conservation tool for rural landowners is critical as our state continues to grow.”
Conaway joins 18 others currently serving on TALT’s board of directors, and will serve a three-year term as an at-large member of the board. TALT’s bylaws direct the organization’s board to include members of its three founding organizations (Texas Wildlife Association, Texas Farm Bureau and the Texas Southwestern and Cattle Raisers Association), landowners, and at-large members.
“We’re looking forward to working with Mike to help keep Texas big, wide and open,” said TALT CEO Chad Ellis. “His breadth of experience in the agricultural policy arena will be invaluable as we work together to conserve agricultural working lands in Texas.”