The Highland Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) attended the Area 5 winter meeting held on Dec. 7 at Emmett Chapel United Methodist Church in Circleville.
At the meeting Pam Bushelman, Highland SWCD District Operations Manager, received an Area 5 Service Award for Employee of the Year.
Jim Carr, Highland SWCD Fiscal Agent, had the honor of presenting Pam the award on behalf of the Highland SWCD Board and the Area 5 Directors.
Pam is a native of Highland County and lives on the family farm where she grew up. Pam started her career with the district as the administrative assistant, where she managed the financial records for the board and performed general office duties. As she gained experience with soil and water conservation she started assisting customers and helping other staff implement various conservation programs in the county. Over time, Pam became more involved and assisted with various education events. She has hosted several events and has partnered with surrounding SWCDs to offer educational programs for both students and adults. In addition, she also supports the local Envirothon teams, manages the county conservation poster contest, and helps many high school students better understand agriculture and soil and water conservation through the county’s annual Ag Reality program. In 2012, the Highland SWCD Board promoted Pam to the position of District Operations Manager, and since then she has taken on even greater leadership roles within our district and the community.
The Highland Soil and Water Conservation District Board and Staff would like to thank Pam for her dedicated service for nearly 15 years.
The winter meeting also featured speeches, presentations, the swearing in of officials, and other award presentations.
Partnering agencies gave updates, including Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts, USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service, Ohio Department of Agriculture, and Ohio Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts Employees. Along with the updates, Highland SWCD was among three districts that conducted presentations.
The keynote speakers for the evening were Brian Mead and Brad Cole, with the County Commissioners Association of Ohio, who spoke about the Medicaid managed care organization sales tax and dedicated sources of funding for local governments.
Judge Randall Knece of Pickaway County Common Pleas Court swore in the newly elected and re-elected Soil and Water Conservation District supervisors. Fiscal Agent Jim Carr and member Kyle Mustard took the oath of office for Highland County SWCD.
In addition to Bushelman, two other individuals were presented with Area 5 Service Awards: Steve Sheets, Delaware SWCD Board Member, and Nikki Drake, Fairfield SWCD Engineering Technician.
In 2017 the Highland Soil and Water Conservation District will be celebrating its 75th anniversary as the first soil and water conservation district formed in the state.
Submitted by Megan Scott, Highland Soil and Water Conservation District Resource Specialist.