Stark SWCD honors James Pastore, Patt Tercek

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CANTON, Ohio – Stark County farmer James Pastore Sr. was named Conservation Farmer of the Year by the county Soil and Water Conservation District at its annual meeting and banquet Nov. 1.

The award is given annually to a farmer who shows a commitment to long-term conservation efforts on their farm.

Pastore, who was unable to attend the banquet, will receive the award at the district’s next board meeting.

Pastore’s A and J Farms is situated on 325 acres of a reclaimed strip mine and limestone quarry in the northeastern part of the county. Since he purchased the farm in 1989, Pastore has regraded the soil, installed lakes, grassed waterways, and subsurface tiling.

The operation also includes no-till and minimum till acreage of corn and soybeans and 8 acres of woodland.

He also manages a lake, dry hydrant with paved access area, and wide roadway buffers to aid in both soil and water conservation.

Pastore has also hosted the Stark County Farm Bureau drive-it-yourself tour on his farm.

Other awards. Julie Berbari, urban resource coordinator, presented Dave Rothacher of Beaver Excavating Company with the county’s Excellence in Conservation award.

The award recognize a company’s cooperation, conservation management and communication initiatives.

“This company gets paid to totally destroy land, so we want to honor them for doing the job responsibly,” Berbari said. “When you think of all that could go wrong with excavating a site, you’ve got to notice when this company makes sure nothing does.”

Canton City Schools’ kindergarten teacher Patt Tercek was honored as Conservation Teacher of the Year. Her efforts to educate students from The Early Childhood Center and their families about natural resources include organizing an annual watershed festival, and teaching about conservation in classroom activities.

“She really has contributed to the outreach and education programs that SWCD tries to do,” said Jennifer Smith, district supervisor.

Other business. Conservationist Andy Bayham outlined district accomplishments from the past year, including the construction of agricultural waste storage and management structures and composting areas.

Nearly 3 miles of grassed waterways have been added to county farms, and nearly 40 acres of trees were planted through the Forestry Incentive Program.

County residents in attendance elected Rodney Campbell as district supervisor for a three-year term beginning Jan. 1.

Blaine Werner of Louisville provided the evening’s entertainment.

(You can contact Andrea Myers at 1-800-837-3419, ext. 22, or by e-mail at amyers@farmanddairy.com.)

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