In 1939 Tennessee authorized the formation of Soil Conservation Districts (Districts) when the legislators passed the Soil Conservation District Act into Law. By 1945 Tennessee landowners had successfully petitioned the state for the charter of nearly 30 Districts. Discussions among these early Districts led to the formation of an association for Districts. In August of 1945 the Tennessee Association of Conservation Districts (TACD), then called the Tennessee Association of Soil Conservation Districts, held its first official meeting. W. F. Fletcher of the Haywood Soil Conservation District served as TACD's first President. Over the next 14 years Districts continued to organize in Tennessee until the last District was chartered in 1959. In 2023, all districts across Tennessee changed their names to the Soil & Water Conservation Districts.
TACD was created by Districts for Districts and is governed by Tennessee's 95 Districts and the 475 men and women who serve on the District boards. TACD is officially registered as a not-for-profit corporation through the Tennessee Secretary of State. The association is divided into three divisions; East, Middle, and West Tennessee. Each division is divided into 3 areas. TACD's Articles of Association provide for Officers and Directors consisting of a President, a Vice President, a Secretary, a Treasurer, and a Council Member to the National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD). Each Division has a Vice President, and each Area has a Director, and two Vice-Directors. TACD has an Executive Director hired as its consultant.
The mission of TACD is: Helping Soil & Water Conservation Districts conserve and enhance the natural resources of Tennessee through education, leadership and advocacy.
Some of the objectives of TACD are:
- To advance the programs of Soil & Water Conservation Districts
- To promote the welfare of the people of Tennessee through the work of Soil & Water Conservation Districts
- To develop citizen participation and leadership in the affairs of Soil & Water Conservation Districts
- To encourage cooperation among Districts and Local, State and Federal agencies
- To promote education and information about soil and water conservation
- To encourage the exchange of information and promote cooperation among Soil & Water Conservation Districts
- To promote effective organization and management of Soil& Water Conservation Districts; and
- To develop and recommend legislative proposals as needed to promote and enhance the conservation of Tennessee's soil and water resources.
TACD encourages every SWCD supervisor, SWCD employee, state and federal employees, interested landowners and other professionals to actively participate in TACD programs and initiatives to expand their ability to protect Tennessee's abundant natural resources through the local Soil & Water Conservation District and to assist in making our Association even more successful in the future.
*Information found on the Tennessee Association of Conservation Districts website www.tnacd.org