Conference Information

Date: June 5 - 6, 2017

Location: Bay City, DoubleTree by Hilton

Shining Star Awards

Agenda at Glance 

Our Sponsors and Exhibitors 

Monday Session Descriptions

Our Speakers

Summer Conference Home Page





Tuesday Session Description - May 15 Draft

7:00 - 7:50 AM - Breakfast (meal ticket required)

8:00—8:50 am - Breakout Sessions A
District Director Roundtable
This facilitated roundtable for directors will provide participants the opportunity for discussions on topics of interest.

Farm Bill Biologist Roundtable
This facilitated roundtable discussion will provide an opportunity for Farm Bill Biologists to share ideas, concerns and issues related to Farm bill Biologist activities.

Forestry Assistance Program (FAP) Update
Updates on the Forestry Assistance Program, including reporting, future training, and the general status of the program will be shared.

Conservation Technical Assistance Initiative (CTAI) Update
Program updates for the Conservation Technical Assistance Program will be provided.

Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) Update
A general session for NRCS staff members, with program updates provided.

Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program (MAEAP) Update
Come learn about important program updates regarding the program, database, training, and other MAEAP topics.

9:00 - 9:50 am - Breakout Sessions B

MACD Legislative Program
District Directors and Managers are invited to this open discussion on MACD legislative activities in support of district funding.  

Forestry Assistance Program (FAP) Roundtable
The facilitated forum for foresters, district managers, board members, and MDARD staff to share ideas and address concerns that are affecting local programs. 

Conservation Technical Assistance Initiative (CTAI) Roundtable
This facilitated open discussion is a great opportunity to discuss issues of importance to those involved in the CTAI program. 

History of the Michigan Conservation Partnership

What is the conservation partnership?  Please join Brian Buehler, NRCS Public Affairs Specialist and Steve Law, MACD Consultant for an insightful review of the development of the partnership and our role within the partnership today.

Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program (MAEAP) Roundtable
This facilitated roundtable for the MAEAP program will be an opportunity to discuss current topics of interest and learn from each other.

Understanding and Using the NRCS Field Office Technical Guide to Treat Resource Concerns on Private Land
This session will cover using resource information and technical tools available on the FOTG to complete inventory and assessments as part of the conservation planning process.  Including how to properly identify resource concerns, a review of the various tools used to complete the field inventory & evaluations, and the minimum documentation needed to support planning practices to address resource concerns. Conservation systems verses individual practices will also be discussed.

9:50 - 10:10 am - Refresh! Break

10:10 - 11:00 am Breakout Sessions C

SEEDS Youth Conservation Corps; Supporting Today's Opportunity Youth to Be Tomorrow's Next Conservationists
The SEEDS Youth Conservation Corps (YCC) is a demonstrated and effective job-training program that focuses on youth ages 16-25 who are considered highly at-risk. SEEDS has successfully employed hundreds of young people in 18 counties and is working with multiple Conservation Districts providing hands-on experience in basic job skills, as well as exposure to a variety of green-collar and conservation job industries. Join this session to learn about the program and the opportunities available for your district to engage with SEEDS YCC.

Working with Beginning and Underserved Farmers
Michigan Food and Farming Systems (MIFFS) has identified some important resources to connect beginning and underserved farmers with Conservation Districts, United States Department of Agriculture, and Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.  Jen Silveri will provide some ways to take the complexity out of the various programs and help these farmers off to a great start.  

Pesticide Container Recycling (PCR) Program
Learn about the history, structure and the coming changes in the pesticide container recycling program and how you can participate/promote the effort.

Farm Bill Programs for Forestry and Wildlife
The USDA Farm Bill is a great tool to use for forest and wildlife conservation. Utilizing these programs to achieve a landowner's objectives requires an understanding about resource concerns, appropriate programs, and timing of practices. This session is aimed at helping district technicians understand these concepts and apply them for more and better forest and wildlife conservation.

Personal Safety & De-escalation for Conservation Professionals
Ever found yourself in a questionable situation on a farm, forest, or with a landowner? Not sure how to handle an angry customer?  Trooper Smith from the Michigan State Police will provide some tips to make sure you stay safe.  The same session will run two times to provide opportunity for you to participate.  

Earth Team Volunteer Program
The NRCS Earth Team volunteer program was created in 1985 and provides an opportunity for anyone to support local conservation by working with USDA conservation professionals. This session will provide information about how to enroll and supervise Earth Team volunteers to support the NRCS mission.  

MDEQ Non Point Source Grant Opportunities
Learn about Michigan’s Nonpoint Source Program, eligible grant activities, updates to this year’s Request for Proposals, and some helpful tips to consider when preparing a proposal.

11:10 - 12:00 pm Breakout Sessions D

History of the Michigan Conservation Partnership  - REPEAT

Michigan's Wetland Mitigation Banking Program - what's in it for you 
The Michigan DNR, working with the Michigan Municipal Wetland Alliance is starting up a new program.  What is it?  Why do we want it?  Where are we doing it and who are we doing it for?  Learn about this new program for your communities and your producers, including the role conservation district will play and how to get involved.

Personal Safety & De-escalation for Conservation Professionals - REPEAT
Ever found yourself in a questionable situation on a farm, forest, or with a landowner? Not sure how to handle an angry customer?  Trooper Smith from the Michigan State Police will provide some tips to make sure you stay safe.  The same session will run two times to provide opportunity for you to participate.  

Non-Farm Bill Programs for Wildlife
There are a variety of conservation programs available to landowners interested in wildlife habitat outside of the USDA Farm Bill. Many agencies and NGOs offer programs for wetland restoration, grassland establishment, and forestry. This session will help technicians evaluate the options for a landowner interested in wildlife habitat and how to help a landowner enroll.

Robert's Questions and Answers
Based on Robert’s Rues of Order Newly Revised, this workshop will include answers to common misconceptions about parliamentary procedure and basic information on how to handle motions—information that will assist you in making your meetings more effective.

12:10 - 1:15 pm Closing Lunch and "Reach for the Stars" Recognition
Join your friends and colleagues for a celebratory lunch to honor those who are reaching for the stars!   

1:30 - 4:00pm - Quick Books for New Users
This hands-on workshop will provide new users with an overview of QuickBooks.  How to get around the program and basics new users need to understand including how classes work, reports for boards, bank reconciliations, and more.  Please bring your laptop with QuickBooks loaded..