OASWCDE — What the heck is it?


The OASWCDE is the Ohio Association of Soil and Water Conservation District Employees. The organization is open to employees of all 88 districts as official members. District board members and partners from other agencies are welcome to join as associate members.


The OASWCDE has three main purposes:

To promote the professional development of district employees.

To enhance cooperation between districts through improved communications and information sharing.

To establish a platform from which to communicate with affiliated state and national associations.

The OASWCDE has 10 elected executive directors; two from each of the five areas of the state. These directors meet every other month; either in Columbus or by conference calls.

The organization is involved in the planning of the annual partnership meeting. This event is used to enhance the professional development of all of the employees in the state.


Scholarships are offered through the OASWCDE. The Sherry West Scholarship is offered to a current, retired or deceased members’ child who has been a member for at least three consecutive years (or the last three years of employment.)

There is also a scholarship available for SWCD staff continuing education. Each $500 scholarship is awarded annually. Conservation district professional awards are given annually to one district employee and one supervisor to recognize professionalism and dedication to conservation.

The Catastrophic Sick Leave Program was created through the Employee’s Association. The OASWCDE worked with state legislators to have a law enacted to allow employees to donate sick leave to other employees during unfortunate circumstances.

The Catastrophic Sick Leave Program has been in place for more than 10 years.

OASWCDE directors are Jeff Ankney, Defiance County; Michelle Mattix, Marion County; Dan Donaldson, Lake County; Tim White, Erie County; Julia Cumming, Madison County; Ryan Smith, Butler County; Cathy Bobo, Athens County; Dona Rhea, Delaware County; and Tammy Jones, Monroe County.


There is currently a vacancy in area three.

The Ohio Employees Association is represented at the national level by Irene Moore, district administrator of the Jefferson SWCD. Moore currently serves as president of the National Association of Conservation District Employees.

Information regarding the Ohio Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts employees is available at www.oaswcde.org.

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