The Full Story
The National Conservation District Employees Association is organized on a regional basis. Each region has a Region Director along with a Region Director Alternate who provide information and outreach throughout their area. Region Directors can be called upon to speak at state employee organizations, assist with training and outreach, and collaborate with partners. They bring the perspectives of the states in their regions to the national conservation dicussion.
The Northern Plains region - Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska and Kansas boast diversity - from mountains to rolling prairies. The history and culture of the region highlight a legacy of conservation and agriculture. Landowners and producers are dedicated to marrying conservation and production agriculture to create a legacy of land use for generations to come.
Region Director: Sarah Tunge
Region Alternate: Tami Moore
The Southwest Region states of Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming are known for their arid deserts, red rock landscapes, rugged mountains, vast forests, and natural wonders. Agriculture in the region is as diverse as the people who call it home, from large scale production and cattle operations to small subsistence farms. Our rich agricultural past and present include Native American and tribal agricultural practices and ancient traditions. The Southwest Region incorporates the heaviest amount of irrigation practices of any region, since the region is hot and dry, and the soil is generally not as conducive to plant growth as other areas of the country. While the landscape has been more recently affected by drought and climate change, agriculture as a community is working to address opportunities and natural resource practices that are helping to mitigate these effects and continue to provide for the future of food sustainability. Conservation District employees in the Southwest Region are the conduit where natural resource concerns and conservation practices find their connections.
Region Director: Gretchen Rank
Region Alternate: Brenda Smythe
The Pacific Region encompasses 11 territories and states, including Alaska, American Samoa, California, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Oregon, Palau, and Washington. There is a significant diversity in terrain, climate, population, and natural resources concerns among Pacific Region states and territories; however, there are overlapping areas of focus and work, including ongoing drought; forest health; fire planning and resiliency; invasive species; and sea level rise. Highlights of programs and projects in various stages of progress within Pacific Region address one or more of the above-referenced concerns and include local implementation of statewide collaborative forest health and catastrophic fire reduction work; ongoing multi-stakeholder coordination focused on population control of highly invasive and destructive axis deer present on multiple islands; identification and expansion of critical habitat supporting Coho salmon and other endangered fish and wildlife; and statewide district and association work on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion programming and deliverables. Collectively, Pacific Region members have brought experience and expertise from implementation of individual programs and projects into a region-wide Strategic Plan, the successful implementation of which is projected to elevate capacity to address existing and plan for new resources concerns.
Region Director: Mandy Parkes
Region Alternate: Vicky Carter
The regional directors provide a conduit for the exchange of information from the local level up through the states and regions to the national level. They provide a field level perspective that is impactful to policy conversations.