Conservation Update  
December 5 - 18, 2013 
Executive Director's Report

Conference Keynote "Outdoor Josh" Runs Across Indiana

Josh Seehorn is running across the United States on the American Discovery Trail to gain support for the North American Envirothon. While running the Indiana portion of the trail recently, he experienced some "Hoosier Hospitality" from some of our state's Envirothon supporters. 


Darci Zolman, Indiana Envirothon President, and her family hosted Josh for a few days over Thanksgiving. He enjoyed a hearty Thanksgiving meal (something he says he misses on the trail) and spent a few days re-grouping. He used the time to catch up on sleep, food, correspondence and website updates. Josh was returned to the trail, stocked up on pop and Snickers bars! 


Luanne and Mark Hovela with Seehorn
Darci Zolman with Seehorn














For two cold and snowy nights in early December, Matt & LuAnne Holeva hosted Josh and his support driver, Brittani Stanga. Denise Retz, Wayne County Director of the Cardinal Greenway section of the America Discovery Trail, hosted a lunch at the trailside Warehouse Café where folks could meet Josh. On December 9, Josh reached the state line. After a second night of rest at the Holeva household he took off again with Brittani on Tuesday morning into what he called "Snow-H-I-O." 


Check out his mission and journey on, or follow him on Facebook and Twitter @theoutdoorjosh. He will also be opening the 2014 Conference of Indiana SWCDs.


Indiana holds six regional contests in March and a statewide contest in April. To learn more or to get involved, contact Darci Zolman at [email protected]. Information and the 2014 booklet and registration form can also be found on the IASWCD website. 


Local Work Group Survey: NACD Requests Input

NACD seeks information from Local Work Group Chairs

In partnership with NRCS, NACD has developed a survey seeking information regarding the structure and effectiveness of Local Work Groups. NACD asks that the Chairman of the Local Work Group or his/her designee complete this survey on behalf of and in accordance with the members of the Local Work Group. Access the survey hereAll questions in this survey deal with private lands and not federal lands. All responses will be confidential and will only be used for statistical purposes. The survey will take 8-12 minutes to complete. The deadline for responses to the survey is December 31. NACD and NRCS thank you in advance for your input.


Have a great holiday!
Jennifer Boyle Warner, IASWCD Executive Director
CCSI News 

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations Launches Soil Health Portal
In introducing its new tool, the FAO states: "It is difficult to rate the importance of the different soil functions, since all are vital to our well-being, to some extent. However, the function of supporting food production and agriculture worldwide is fundamental for the preservation and advancement of human life on this planet." The portal includes resources on soil surveys, assessment, biodiversity, soil management, degradation and restoration of soils, and soil polices and governance. 

Visit the Soil Health Portal at


Save the Dates
Please keep an eye out for a couple CCSI events:
  • January 29: Slug Control in Cropping Systems
  • February and March 2014: Several dates will offer advanced and intro-level soil health and conservation cropping workshops for agency staff and farmers alike. 

You may also like to visit our soil health calendar, which is packed with exciting upcoming events! 

Keep updated with CCSI events on Facebook and Twitter, or sign up to join our mailing list! 
Annual Conference News: Sponsor Showcase
The Indiana Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts (IASWCD) continues to showcase our 2014 Conference sponsors as a prelude to the January 6-8 event set for the Indianapolis Marriott Downtown. Join us in showing support and patronage to these companies and organizations that support and value Indiana conservation.
Welcome Luncheon Sponsor: Cover Crop Solutions

Springing from the development of Tillage Radish® by Steve Groff, farmer and cover crop innovator, co-founders David Weaver and Eric Weaver organized Cover Crop Solutions (CCS) to focus on spreading the good news about cover crops, and how they benefit the bottom line for conventional tillage farmers and no-till farmers alike by enhancing and sustaining soil health. Today, Cover Crop Solutions is among the most rapidly growing seed companies in North America, thanks to its focus on cover crops alone. Visit them at


Welcome Break Sponsor Ceres Solutions

Ceres Solutions is a diverse agriculture, grain and supply partnership that was launched in 2007. Ceres Solutions brings together AgroKey Co-op of Rensselaer, Growers Co-op of Terre Haute and Westland Co-op of Crawfordsville - three financially sound cooperatives with a heritage of committed people providing excellent customer service. Visit Ceres Solutions online at


Welcome Break Sponsor NTM Ag Equipment

At NTM, their number one goal is helping farmers become better stewards of the land that God has given by utilizing cover crops and responsible tillage practices. Visit NTM Ag online at

Annual Conference News: Capacity Building Track
Prioritizing - Getting It All Done! 
Presenter: Mike Manning, Purdue Cooperative Extension

Have you ever wondered if you could accomplish every task that you personally wanted, as well as what your organization or supervisor would like? Balancing and prioritizing your work life and home life can create stress for all people. This session is designed to offer practical tips and advice on how to gain perspective and balance.


Implementing Successful Marketing Strategies

Presenter: Jerry Shafer, Purdue University

This marketing session will focus on key elements Districts should consider when putting together their marketing and communications plans. Highlights, in addition to discussion of some basic marketing strategies, will include examples from peers within the state using both traditional marketing techniques as well as new technologies in eff ective manners. This will be a highly interactive session with discussion between the moderator and attendees to ensure we not only cover what marketing tactics work, but also how to achieve these successes! 


Crucial Conversations, Parts 1 and 2: Get Unstuck with Best Practice Skills for High-Stakes Interactions 

Presenter: Justin Hale, VitalSmarts

In these sessions, Justin will go more in-depth into how the Crucial Conversations series teaches skills for creating alignment and agreement by fostering open dialogue around high-stakes, emotional, or risky topics - at all levels of your organization. 


Wednesday Session: Videography in the Field

Presenters: Lee Nassau, DL Images; Hans Kok, Dan Towery, & Lisa Holscher, Conservation Cropping Systems 

Almost every device comes equipped with a video camera today: phones, tablets, digital cameras - we now have opportunities to easily (and inexpensively) record field days, meetings and special events. However, there's a big difference between a video that will actually be watched, and one that turns viewers off. Lee Nassau, president, DL Images, and an award-winning fi lm maker, will lead session participants in basic videography skills. Learn how to film and produce engaging videos, how to share and promote your videos to a wider audience, and how to engage with popular media outlets online  

Annual Conference:  
January 6-8, 2014

Registration is Open!

Register online here. 


Legislative Breakfast

Invite your legislators to this annual event, which takes place at 7:30 a.m. on January 8. Lt. Governor Sue Ellspermann will be our speaker. The breakfast conversations are important to securing future funding and good relationships with our legislators! For more information, or to receive another copy of the of the invitation letter template, send an email to [email protected].


Auxiliary Silent Auction
The women's auxiliary would like to remind IASWCD conference participants to please bring items to the auction as well as visit their booth during the conference. Proceeds from the auction support environmental education. Questions can be directed to 

Conference Brochure

Includes sessions, keynote speakers, and sponsors. View it here.


Delegate Registration

Who will represent
your District at the Annual Business Meeting this year? Register your delegate online by December 23.

Submitted Resolutions
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Upcoming Events

View the full calendar for details on each event 


DEcember 19:

Webinar: Disaster Response for SWCDs


January 6-8

Annual Conference of Indiana SWCDs


January 20:

Heart of America Grazing Conference


January 28:

Conservation Day at the Statehouse


See all events, or Contribute an event 

CCSI Events
January 29:
Slug Control in Cropping Systems (save the date!)

February 12 & 13:

Basics of Soil Health

See Details Here


March 2014:

Advanced Conservation Cropping Systems and Cover Crop Workshops

Separate events for farmers and non-farmers

See Details Here

Other News

Conservation Day at the Statehouse: Jan. 28

Conservation Day is an incredible opportunity to show our elected officials that Hoosiers care about protecting our precious natural resources and preserving our environment. Meet your legislator at our reception and talk to them about how important conservation of our natural resources is to you. Register here. This event is FREE to all registrants, thanks to sponsor member donations.


Forest Management for the Private Woodland Owner:  8 Week Course

 Presented by the Purdue University Department of Forestry and Natural Resources and the Cooperative Extension Service of Purdue University with assistance from Indiana DNR Division of Forestry. View details here.


National Wetlands Awards

The National Wetlands Awards are presented annually to individuals who have excelled in wetlands protection, restoration, and education. Learn more at 

Upcoming Grants: 


December 31, 2013:

Celebrate Urban Birds mini-grants are open to organizations, educators, and youth. Proposals should integrate the arts, greening, birds and community involvement. All mini-grant applicants are offered materials and training to support their events (even if their proposals are not funded). Organizations working with underserved communities are strongly encouraged to apply. No experience with birding needed. Mini-grants average $100 to $500. 


January 14, 2014

The National Forest Foundation's Matching Awards Program provides support to engage in on-the-ground conservation and citizen-based monitoring projects benefiting National Forests and Grasslands. Funded projects must address one or more of the following program areas of emphasis: Wildlife Habitat Improvement, Recreation, Watershed Health and Restoration, or Community-Based Forestry. All grants require at least a one-to-one cash match through non-federal donations.

2014 annual conference

Positions Open
MS4/Stormwater Coordinator: Whiteland
The Town of Whiteland is seeking applications for the position of MS4 / Stormwater Coordinator. The position includes the total responsibility of stormwater management for Whiteland. Read the full job description.