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Wildfire Project Wins Prestigious USDA Award


WASHINGTON, June 28, 2004—Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Chief Bruce Knight recently honored the Idaho Resource Conservation and Development (RC&D) coordinators in the 58th annual U.S. Department of Agriculture Honor Awards Ceremony. These awards are the most prestigious honors bestowed by the Secretary of Agriculture.


Pictured left to right:  Steve Smart, High Country RC&D; Julie Thomas, Mid-Snake RC&D; Scott Ferguson, Bear River RC&D; Polly Huggins, Wood River RC&D; Dan Pierce, Clearwater RC&D; Paula Jones, Three Rivers R&CD; Bill Moore, Southwest Idaho RC&D; Kim Golden, Panhandle Lakes RC&D and Russ Manwaring, West Central Highlands RC&D.
 

Idaho’s nine RC&D coordinators—one for each area of the state—received the award for leading communities toward wildfire prevention and suppression. The coordinators worked together to complete countywide wildfire safety assessments, educational programs and fuel reduction demonstrations in rural and urban areas across Idaho.

“The Honor Awards are a tribute to our employees for their commitment to doing the best job possible and serving local communities,” Knight said.

The Idaho RC&Ds’ wildfire projects helped local communities:

  • Educate homeowners on how to protect their property from wildfire

  • Reduce vegetative fuel loads and create fire-safe barriers around housing subdivisions

  • Assist rural fire departments in writing of grants for new equipment and fire stations

  • Work with community leaders to develop fire mitigation plans

“I’m very impressed with the RC&D accomplishments,” says Rich Sims, Idaho NRCS state conservationist. “The local communities and the safety of their citizens will greatly benefit from this work.”

Idaho’s RC&Ds are located in Coeur d’Alene, Moscow, Emmett, Meridian, Gooding, Twin Falls, North Logan (UT), Pocatello and Rexburg. RC&Ds focus on the environmental, economic and social needs of their area by coordinating projects to enhance the quality of life.

 

 

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