PACD Accepting Award Nominations

Recognize a fellow conservationist by nominating him or her for a PACD Award:

  • Ann Rudd Saxman Conservation District Director or Associate Director Excellence Award
  • Conservation District Employee Excellence Award
  • Legislator Recognition Award
  • Maurice K. Goddard Award for Excellence in Environmental Recreation

Nominations are due by April 30. Click here for more information and a nomination form. Contact Jann McNamara at with any questions.

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Registration for Spring 102/105 Topic-Based Training Opens

Registration is now open for 102/105 Topic-based Technical Training. The course is open to conservation district and DEP staff and will take place April 10-12, 2018, at the Ramada Conference Center in State College, PA. There is little or no cost to attend. Click here to register or for more information. Questions? Contact Molly Burns at

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$10,000 Available for 2018 Educational Mini-grant Program for Conservation Districts

Grants up to $2,000 are awarded to conservation districts for adult educational projects that offer strategies for reducing and preventing Nonpoint Source (NPS) Pollution. Projects should stimulate a local awareness of water quality issues, promote the theme “We All Live Downstream,” and encourage citizen participation in activities to improve water quality in local watersheds.

The deadline for NPS mini-grant applications is March 2, 2018. Click here for the online application and more information.  Please note that a Google Account is required to submit an application. Questions should be directed to Shannon Wehinger.

Financial and other support for the NPS Mini-grant Program is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.



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Pennsylvania Posters Place Third in National Contest

Third place poster contest winner Shreaya Ilayanambi in the 2-3 grade category.

PACD is pleased to announce that two Pennsylvania entries won third place in the National Association of Conservation Districts 2017 “Healthy Soils are Full of Life!” poster contest. Both posters were submitted by Delaware County Conservation District.

They are:

 Congratulations to these two young artists!


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Statewide Clean Water Farm Award Nominations Due April 30

The Clean Water Farm Award Program recognizes Pennsylvania farmers whose exemplary farm management practices result in improved local and downstream water quality. Pennsylvania’s conservation districts may submit a nomination for a farm in their county. One award will be given in each of PACD’s six regions.

Each district that submits a complete nomination will be entered into a drawing to win a $100 pizza party for their office! Deadline: April 30, 2018.

Award recipients receive a large Clean Water Farm Award sign to hang at their farm, a signed certificate, and an invitation to the PACD/SCC Awards Luncheon in July.

Financial support for this award is provided by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection through the Chesapeake Bay Regulatory and Accountability Program and the Pennsylvania Chesapeake Bay Education Office (administered by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc.).

Click here to read more. 

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Free Communications Webinars Offered to Conservation Districts

PACD has scheduled seven free webinar series for conservation districts. Presented by Water Words That Work, LLC, these environmental communication trainings will begin in February 2018 and end in May 2018. How do we get more participation at our programs? How can we effectively reach our target audiences and the general public? What are the most cost-effective means to get the word out about our programs? Find out answers to these questions and more during these webinars.

New for this year, “Closing the Deal with Rural Landowners” will teach the tricks of the trade that top “ag whisperers” use to get voluntary conservation projects on the ground. If you need more landowners to take you up on your offer, this course is for you! This webinar series will be repeated four times – so only sign up for one series.

The dates are (all webinars will be held 9-10:30am):

  • Water Words that Work – Trainings: February 20, 22, 27
  • More Than a Message – Trainings: March 6, 13, 15
  • Perfect Outreach Projects – Trainings: March 20, 22, 23
  • Cutting the Deal with Rural Landowners Group 1 – Trainings: February 7, 9, 14
  • Cutting the Deal with Rural Landowners Group 2 – Trainings: March 27, 29, and April 3
  • Cutting the Deal with Rural Landowners Group 3 – Training: April 10, 12, 17
  • Cutting the Deal with Rural Landowners Group 4 – Trainings: May 1, 3, 8

Click here to register. 

Financial support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection through the Chesapeake Bay Implementation Grant, the Clean Water Fund and the Chesapeake Bay Regulatory and Accountability Program (CBRAP).

Click here to view a flyer with more information.

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Shambaugh Attends House Appropriations Hearing

The House Appropriations Committee held a hearing on January 25, 2018 in Harrisburg on the use of special funds. Photo taken by Brenda Shambaugh.

On January 25, 2018, PACD Executive Director Brenda Shambaugh attended a House of Representatives Appropriations Committee hearing at the Capitol in Harrisburg. The committee received testimony related to the Department of Environmental Protection and Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.

PA Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Secretary Patrick McDonnell and Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn provided testimony on how their agencies use special funds.

During the hearing, several questions were asked about conservation district funding and timely reimbursements. DEP Secretary Patrick McDonnell explained the funding comes from several sources and the balance [of the conservation district fund] has a lot to do with when the fees are actually collected and deposited. Several legislators on the Committee commented about the great work accomplished by conservation districts.

Click here to read more. 


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Manure Management Facilitator Training Concludes

Instructor Charlie White speaks to the attendees of the Manure Management Train the Trainer event in Perry County on January 25, 2018.

Thirty-three participants were trained as facilitators through the Manure Management Train the Trainer program this January. The training events were held in Clarion, Perry, and Wyoming Counties.

Participants learned how to use the Manure Management Manual to write plans and guide others through using the manual.

PACD facilitates the trainings for the PA Department of Environmental Protection. Instruction is provided by Jerry Martin, Senior Penn State Extension Associate and Dr. Charles White, Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist, Soil Fertility and Nutrient Management, at Penn State.

Financial support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection through the Chesapeake Bay Implementation Grant, the Clean Water Fund and the Chesapeake Bay Regulatory and Accountability Program (CBRAP).   


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PACD/SCC Winter Meeting Concludes

The PACD Executive Board holds the Executive Council meeting on January 18, 2018.

From January 17-18, 2018, conservation district directors, associate directors, staff, partners, and friends braved the snowy roads to travel to Toftrees in State College for the PACD/SCC Winter Meeting.

During Executive Council the following were approved:

  • Bylaws change to allow associate directors to serve as region directors.
  • Bylaws change to allow every board member a vote on the PACD Executive Board.
  • Policy opposing an abbreviated permit review period.
  • Cliff Lane was elected as National Association of Conservation Districts Director.

Also during the meeting, a 50/50 drawing was held to benefit the PA Envirothon. Because winner Kelly Stagen donated her winnings back to the Envirothon, PACD was able to write a check for $309 to the Envirothon.

Next, PACD is turning its focus toward the NACD Northeast Regional Meeting & PACD/SCC Joint Annual Conference which will take place July 15-18, 2018 in Lancaster, PA.

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PACD Holds Successful Strategic Planning Session

PACD President Charles Duritsa speaks to the group during the Strategic Planning Session.

On January 16, 2018, PACD held a strategic planning session at Toftrees in State College prior to the PACD/SCC Winter Meeting. Board members, staff, and one district manager from each region were guided through the process by Michael Kumer.

The group identified seven priorities. They are:

  1. PACD will promote and advocate for conservation districts to elected officials, partners, and the general public.
  2. PACD will help districts with the recruitment, training, and development of directors, managers, and staff.
  3. PACD will help districts attain sustainable, diverse funding.
  4. Strengthen relationships and agreements with state and federal agencies.
  5. Growing Greener
  6. Ensure PACD is adequately staffed and funded.
  7. Foster communication and communication between districts.

Next, PACD will work to identify specific tasks to focus on these priorities.

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