EATON — The 70th Preble Soil and Water Conservation District Annual Meeting was held Tuesday, Aug. 27, at the Lakengren Lodge in Eaton. The weather cooperated and the sun came out as guests arrived for the SWCD Board of Supervisors election. The meal was prepared by Rick VanCamp and Beth Gunder, owners of Big Dawgz at the Lake, located in the Lakengren Lodge.
Amanda Badger, local wildlife conservationist and owner of Wild Hearts African Farm, spoke at the meeting and presented a few of her unique animals from the farm. She discussed her experiences, her efforts in creating Wild Hearts African Farm, and the importance of conservation. After the presentation, this year’s conservation award winners were recognized. Webster Family Farms of Northeast Preble County was selected as the Cooperator of the Year for numerous conservation practices that are incorporated into their farming operation. Rebecca Holbrook, former Agricultural Education teacher at Eaton High School, was inducted into the Conservation Hall of Fame. Holbrook taught agriculture at Eaton High School for 22 years and is currently directing Project Lead the Way at Northmont, a program to teach students about the design process for anything they can imagine.
Two special awards were given at the 70th Annual Meeting. Jason Chappel was recognized for his 15 years of service at the Preble SWCD. Supervisor Donn Kolb was presented with a plaque for 30 years of dedication to the Preble SWCD and community, as he will be retiring in December.
Results of the Board of Supervisors election were also announced. Donald Hays was elected and will begin a three year term in January 2020. Returning board members include Kip Denlinger, Keith Schmidt, Mike Broermann, and Jim Leedy.
The SWCD would like to thank everyone who helped with the annual meeting, including Big Dawgz at the Lake, Badger and fellow conservationists, National Trail FFA members, and the following door prize donors: Michael Murphy Insurance, Preble County Historical Society, Quality Tile & Drainage, Tractor Supply, Twin Valley Bank, and Farm Credit Mid-America.
Thanks also to everyone who attended the meeting. We look forward to working with residents of the county in the coming year.