The roots of SoilKeepers began growing in 2011 though the Rappahannock River Friendly Yard Program, a joint venture between the Center for Natural Capital (then Conserv) and the Rappahannock River Basin Commission. In 2011, the Commission embarked on a multi-year initiative to test economic approaches to watershed restoration that combine innovation and cost-effectiveness. The Center for Natural Capital is a group of ecological entrepreneurs that create both for profit and non-profit small businesses to restore our air, land, water, and wildlife.
The Project Team Prime Contractor was the Center for Natural Capital + Partners. 2012 Partners include The National Wildlife Federation, George Washington University Landscape Design Department, Friends of the Rappahannock, and Bio Green, U.S.A. Corporation.
Seeing the need for a landscape service with an express purpose to heal our soils one property at a time, the Center launched Soilkeepers as a pilot service in a few areas of Fredericksburg in 2014.
Phase I Project Team members
– Eldon James, Staff, Rappahannock River Basin Commission
– Eliza Russell, Director of Education, National Wildlife Federation
– Michael Collins, Project Manager, Conserv
– Richard “Buzz” Van Santvoord, Business Development Manager, Conserv
– Chris Sonne, Civil Engineer, Conserv
– Virginia Rockwell, Landscape Designer, Conserv
– Chip Rice, Friends of the Rappahannock
– Brad Huff, BioGreen U.S.A. Corporation
– Kevin Utt, City of Fredericksburg
– Adele Ashkar, George Washington University