The Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program awarded two technicians for their outstanding conservation work over the past year.
Alex Svoboda of the Osceola-Lake Conservation District and Robert Malcomnson of the Lapeer Conservation District were presented with the awards during the Michigan Association of Conservation Districts’ convention and annual meeting, which was held virtually Dec. 14.
Every year since 2010, MAEAP has selected two exceptional program technicians for the Verification Award and the MAEAP Technical Assistance Award to recognize them for going above and beyond for MAEAP and their commitment to conservation in Michigan.
Launched in 1998, MAEAP is an innovative, voluntary program that helps farms of all sizes and all commodities prevent or minimize agricultural pollution risks.
“When we talk about investing in sustainability and environmental stewardship, what we’re really talking about are the dedicated professionals who go to work every day and actually make it happen, who put best practices into action,” says Gary McDowell, director of the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, which houses and oversees MAEAP.
“Alex and Robert are truly deserving of this recognition. The work they have done with the farmers and landowners in their communities has not only helped MAEAP reach nearly 6,000 verifications, but it also has helped protect Michigan’s resources for future generations.”
Svoboda received the Verification Award, which recognizes the technician who has the most verifications and has gone above and beyond the duties of a technician. Svoboda serves farmers in Clare, Osceola and Lake counties.
He has been a technician for two years and has completed 42 total verifications, including 23 new verifications. He was recognized for his positive attitude and his ability to connect with producers to make them feel at ease.
Malcomnson received the MAEAP Technical Assistance Award, which recognizes an individual who has shown exceptional service to landowners and farmers. Malcomnson serves farmers in both Lapeer and Macomb counties and has been with MAEAP for the past five years.
He is known for building lasting relationships with farmers in his counties and helping them as they work toward verification, the award acknowledged. Malcomnson was recognized for often sharing the tips and tricks of his successes with fellow technicians during conference trainings and going above and beyond to meet with farmers at their convenience.
For more information about MAEAP, visit maeap.org.
For more information about the Michigan Association of Conservation Districts, visit macd.org.
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