STATE COLLEGE, Pa. — Patricia Sueck, director at the York County Conservation District, has received the Ann Rudd Saxman Conservation District Director Excellence Award from the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts.
The award is given to a conservation district director or associate director for volunteer efforts that have furthered the accomplishments of conservation districts on a statewide basis.
Sueck has been director at the York County Conservation District for 18 years. She held various offices in the association, including president, and remains the only female president in the group’s history.
At the national level, Sueck represents Pennsylvania in the National Association of Conservation District and is chair of the northeast National Association of Conservation District board of directors.
Sueck received her award July 29 at the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts award program in State College, Pa.
Also at the ceremony, Gerald M. Heistand received the Conservation District Employee Excellence Award. The award is given to a conservation district employee for making efforts that benefit conservation districts.
Assistant to the administrator of the Lancaster County Conservation District, Heistand has been with the district for 25 years in a variety of positions and has organized and hosted tours for conservationists from other states and nations.
The Pennsylvania Association of Conservation District President’s Award went to the Pennsylvania Fair Share for Clean Water Coalition. This award is given to an individual, organization, or agency for efforts that further the accomplishments of the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation District.
The coalition includes the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, the Pennsylvania Municipal Authorities Association, Pennsylvania Farm Bureau, Chesapeake Bay Foundation and Pennsylvania Builder’s Association.
The coalition created the Pa. Fair Share for Clean Water Plan — a funding proposal to support the needs of Pennsylvania farmers and municipalities faced with the challenges of meeting state and federal clean water mandates.
The awards ceremony was part of the annual state conference for the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts and the State Conservation Commission.
At the meeting, several policy issues were discussed including gas exploration, leasing and development. Delegates passed policy urging conservation districts to work with and encourage the Penn State Cooperative Extension and other organizations to educate landowners about these areas and to use conservation districts as a resource.
The association will also encourage Department of Environmental Protection Bureau of Oil and Gas Management to work with conservation districts to ensure water resource protection.
A number of educational opportunities were presented during the convention including a leadership development session, a presentation on agricultural law, safety training for erosion and sedimentation technicians and conservation planning for agricultural technical staff.