Thursday, March 27, 2014

Congratulations, John!

GSWCD Board Chairman Bill Betram (left) congratulates
John Enos for his 40 years of service on
 the Guernsey Soil & Water Conservation District board of supervisors.
Recently, John Enos was honored during the Ohio Federation of SWCDs during their annual meeting in Columbus.  Only 2 supervisors in the entire state of Ohio received this service award.  John has served the district for 40 years, having been first elected to the Guernsey Soil & Water Conservation District board by county residents in 1973.  For the past several years, he has served as the fiscal agent, overseeing the finances of the district.  
When John was elected in ‘73, the other 4 board members were: Burdette Elliott, Dean Thomas, Rollin Combs, and David Bay.  The Soil Conservation Service conservationist was Mark Giles, and County Extension agent was Wendell Litt.  Kenneth Elliott was the district aide, and Louise Daugherty was the office secretary.  Richard Nixon was president of the US, and John Gilligan was governor.  And Rowan and Martin aired the last season of Laugh-in. 

 During his first year on the board, the official process to create a county-wide soil inventory, called the Soil Survey, was initiated.  That first year, John was also appointed to represent the district on the OSU extension advisory council.  The district had just purchased a Brillion seeder, and rented it to county landowners who wished to improve their hayfields.  A demonstration of its use was organized by the Madison FFA chapter on a farm that the chapter rented.

The district’s annual meeting and election was held at the Madison High School.  At the meeting, the Rev Howard Bay gave the invocation, Deidre Reed and Jack Heston reported on their experience at 4-H Conservation Camp, and Linda Gray reported on her attendance of Forestry Camp.  The district had paid to sponsor these three young people’s registrations to these educational camps.  Landowner Henry McLaughlin received the district’s conservation co-operator of the year award, and was awarded a sign for his farm. 

Although many things have changed over the years, some things have stayed the same.  The district is still overseen by a five person board of local volunteers, who are elected for 3 year terms by residents of Guernsey county during the annual meeting.   The current board consists of Mr. Enos, Bill Bertram, Ken Ford, Myron Dellinger, and Steve Douglass. The district now has 3 fulltime employees; an administrator;  the “aide”, now called a technician, who provides technical advice; and a wildlife/forestry specialist.   The district still has a formal working agreement with the SCS, now called USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service,  and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.  It works closely with OSU Extension on education programs of all sorts.   Along with a newer model of a brillion seeder, there is also a no till drill available for landowners to rent.  And Soil Survey books for Guernsey county are available for the asking today at the GSWCD office. 

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