MACD News Blog

MACD Congratulates New Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue

Thursday, April 27, 2017

EAST LANSING, April 27, 2017 – The Michigan Association of Conservation Districts congratulate Secretary Sonny Perdue on his confirmation as head of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.   


MACD is encouraged that Secretary Purdue understands that America’s agricultural bounty comes directly from the land.  As the former governor of Georgia, a state with abundant natural resources and diverse agricultural production, Secretary Perdue understands the issues and concerns we face in Michigan.  He also understands the importance of our forest resources and that we are all land stewards and it is our responsibility to care for the land, leaving it in better shape for the next generation.

“MACD appreciates Secretary Perdue’s understanding of the significance of our working lands and the value of good conservation stewardship.  We look forward to working with him to secure reauthorization of a strong conservation title of the Farm Bill, and throughout his tenure to advance voluntary conservation adoption on working lands,” stated Art Pelon, MACD President.

A key principle for Secretary Perdue is that America’s agricultural bounty comes directly from the land, and that our land resources sustain millions of Americans and millions more people around the globe.  As stewards of the land, it is our responsibility to leave it better than we found it.  MACD looks forward to ensuring that Michigan Conservation Districts will continue to play a pivotal role in providing conservation assistance to land owners and managers.  Assuring that Michigan citizens have clean and clear water, high quality wildlife habitat, farmland and forests for today and tomorrow. 

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MACD Honors Stephen Shine with Friend of Conservation Award

Thursday, November 05, 2015

EAST LANSING – The Michigan Association of Conservation Districts (MACD) honored Stephen Shine, Conservation Programs Unit Manager with the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) with the 2015 Friend of Conservation Award on Tuesday, October 27th.  The award, presented during the MACD Annual Convention held in Bellaire, recognizes an individual, business, organization or agency who partners with Conservation Districts to help Michigan citizens conserve their lands and Michigan's natural resources.


MACD annually presents the Friend of Conservation Award to recognize the outstanding contributions of an individual or organization for their efforts to improve the public’s understanding of natural resource conservation, for participation in resource management practices in cooperation with a Conservation District, and to further the mission of Michigan Conservation Districts as the local providers of natural resource management services that help our citizens conserve their lands and our state’s resources for a cleaner, healthier, and economically stronger Michigan. 

“MACD is pleased to honor Steve Shine, a long time advocate of Conservation Districts, with the 2015 Friend of Conservation Award”, said Lori Phalen, MACD Executive Director.  “Steve’s conservation roots run deep from the beginning of his career in a local District office to his current position with MDARD.  Many of today’s programs delivered by Conservation Districts come from the ideas he developed, all with the goal of promoting the stewardship of our natural resources.  Steve understands the need for conservation and preservation and in the power of Conservation Districts to deliver.”

The Environmental Stewardship Division within MDARD oversees Michigan Conservation Districts and the state programs delivered by Conservation Districts.  Steve Shine as Conservation Programs Manager manages a number of programs including the Forestry Assistance Program, Hunting Access Program, Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program, and the Habitat Incentive Program, working closely with Conservation Districts to deliver these programs at the local level.   

Michigan Conservation Districts are special purpose units of government, governed by a locally elected five-member board of directors who provide leadership to the District’s activities and programs.  Michigan has 78 Conservation Districts providing all 83 counties with locally-based natural resource assistance and services to help our citizens conserve their lands and our environment for a cleaner, healthier, and economically stronger Michigan.  For more information about the work of Michigan Conservation Districts and the Michigan Association of Conservation Districts, please visit www.macd.org.  For more information about MDARD’s Environmental Stewardship Division, please visit www.michigan.gov/mdard.





Herb Smith Named MACD Director of the Year

Wednesday, November 04, 2015

EAST LANSING – The Michigan Association of Conservation Districts (MACD) honored Herb Smith, Chairman of the Monroe Conservation District, with the 2015 Director of the Year Award on Tuesday, October 27th.  The award, presented during the MACD Annual Convention held in Bellaire, honored Herb Smith for his outstanding support, advocacy and leadership in natural resource conservation at the local level.

The Director of the Year is named annually by MACD to recognize the outstanding contributions of a Conservation District director; one who has provided strong leadership, advocacy and promotion of conservation practices within the community.  

MACD is pleased to honor Herb Smith with the 2015 Director of the Year Award,” said Lori Phalen, Executive Director of the Michigan Association of Conservation Districts.  “Herb strongly supports the Monroe Conservation District and the role of Conservation Districts state-wide.  He is a conservation advocate, volunteering his time and talents and holding leadership positions at the local and state levels.  Herb walks the talk, implementing the conservation practices he advocates for by practicing no-till farming and maintaining buffer strips along the waterways on his farm; and achieving Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program (MAEAP) verification for his 900 acre operation in 2013.  Herb is a true steward of our environment and an integral part of Michigan’s conservation community and we are pleased to honor him with this award.”

Michigan Conservation Districts are special purpose units of government, governed by a locally elected five-member board of directors who provide leadership to the District’s activities and programs.  Michigan has 78 Conservation Districts providing all 83 counties with locally-based natural resource assistance and services to help our citizens conserve their lands and our environment for a cleaner, healthier, and economically stronger Michigan.

For more information about the work of Michigan Conservation Districts and the Michigan Association of Conservation Districts, please visit www.macd.org.  For more information about the Monroe Conservation District and their programs, please visit www.monroecd.org.




Glen Lake Third place Community Outreach Project ME State Competition

Friday, May 15, 2015

Glen Lake High School Take Third place for their Community Outreach Project at the Michigan Envirothon State Competition

A team of students from Glen Lake High School, Caleb and the Galaxy Gals, took third place in the Community Outreach category at the Michigan Envirothon State Competition held May 6th – 8th at Ft. Custer Training Center in Augusta, MI. Seniors Bryanne Palmer, Jane Lively, McKenna Turrill, Skylar Gleason and freshman Caleb Gleason finished third among teams from across the state after putting their public speaking, civic engagement and problem solving to the test.

The 21st annual Michigan Envirothon State Competition hosted remarkable students from around the state.  Twenty four teams qualified and received invitations to the State Competition.  Teams qualified through regional contests held around the state throughout the month of March.

The Michigan Envirothon (ME) program focuses on using the outdoors as a classroom, utilizing diverse "eco-stations" as competition testing sites, and interaction and training with professionals in the field.  In addition to gaining valuable knowledge, teams also complete a Community Outreach Project as part of the competition; identifying and addressing an environmental issue in their community through hands-on problem solving and community education.  A unique component of ME, the community outreach project insures that the program reaches the community, not just the students involved.

A panel of judges evaluated oral and written presentations given by each team, which detailed their community outreach project. As always, all of the teams implemented impressive community action and outreach projects.  The team focused on the importance of local food and how it helps support local economies, reduce the production of fossil fuels from the shipment of food and help build a healthier community.  The team revived a community garden in Empire, MI as part of their project. 

ME is an environmental science based education program for high school students, presented in a team-based competition format.  ME is designed to foster critical thinking, wise stewardship and community involvement. By participating in ME, students and advisors gain knowledge of current environ-mental issues and are motivated to become engaged stewards of Michigan’s natural resources.  

Michigan Envirothon is administered by the Michigan Association of Conservation Districts, a 501(C)3 non profit organization. All Michigan high school students are eligible to compete. For more information about Michigan Envirothon go to www.michiganenvirothon.org or contact Angela Sandusky, Michigan Envirothon coordinator at mienirothon@macd.org or (517)930-7449.

 

*Photos are available upon request