Management systems that effectively increase soil organic matter content are needed to restore southeast U.S. Piedmont soil quality and productivity. A 5-year field study evaluated the effects of tillage, winter cover cropping and the application of compost on soil physical, chemical and biological properties. These properties were used to assess changes in soil quality and to identify a soil management plan that improves soil quality. Soil properties measured were aggregate stability, bulk density, porosity and pore size distribution, available water holding capacity, saturated hydraulic conductivity, infiltration, soil pH, electrical conductivity, extractable phosphorus, CEC, total organic carbon, total nitrogen, and microbial biomass carbon. In disk tillage and no tillage soil quality improved the most with applications of compost and the growing of a winter cover crop.