During the Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts’ (OFSWCD) 73rd Annual Conservation Partnership Conference, “Champions of Conservation” sponsored by Farm Credit Mid-America, Chester (Chet) Murphy, Director of the Fayette Soil & Water Conservation District (SWCD) officially graduated from the “Tom Spellmire Academy of Conservation Leadership.”
Murphy was presented with a Leadership Graduate Certificate and Leadership Pin by Greg Davis, associate director of the Ohio State University Extension Community Development, during the “Legends and Legacies” Luncheon on Tuesday, Feb. 23.
Ohio’s 88 SWCDs are leaders in addressing conservation resource programs and challenges throughout the state. The leadership program, created by the Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts (OFSWCD) with the guidance and direction of OSUE, is offered to the OFSWCD’s 440 county supervisors and 500 plus SWCD employees. It was designed to further develop and strengthen the skills of these individuals for effective leadership and advocacy.
“Leadership is defined as having the ability to lead, guide, direct or influence. We have worked hard to create an effective program that’s brings our expertise with the expertise of the SWCDs to further develop and assist these individuals in their efforts to get conservation on the ground,” shared director Davis. “This partnership is growing, so are the participants!”
OFSWCD CEO Mindy Bankey added, “The Ohio State University has been a true friend and collaborator with our county SWCDs. Chet, along with the rest of those who have participated, has benefited greatly through the leadership sessions and through the interaction with the presenter,” Bankey noted, “Our organization is proud of Chet’s commitment to making himself a stronger leader for the district. And, we look forward to this continued partnership with our friends at Ohio State to further strengthening this program in the future as we continue to serve the state of Ohio’s citizens.”
This year’s OFSWCD “Legends and Legacies” Award Luncheon, sponsored by the Ohio Soybean Council, recognized a number of individuals for outstanding conservation efforts for 2015, including teachers, supervisors, SWCD staff, and landowners. The event’s attendance included over 500 conservation leaders representing the local, state and federal government, farmers, business owners and many more.
The meeting is conducted yearly in Columbus and is focused on conservation training, development, education and outreach. For more information on conservation programs and practices, please contact the OFSWCD at 614-784-1900.
This article was submitted by the Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts.