Last year's winner of the Supervisor of the Year recognition hailed from St. Joseph County. John Dooms farms about as far north as you can get in Indiana. This year, the award travels toward the other end of the state. Jim Brown, Washington County, was named as supervisor of the year earlier this week.
The surprise award, revealed on-stage, is sponsored by Indiana Prairie Farmer magazine. The award was made during the luncheon awards program earlier this week at the annual conference of the Indiana Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts. Brown received a plaque and paid registration to the annual SECD conference.
Brown was promoting soil and water conservation in Washington County long before he became a supervisor. He coached soil judging teams and was involved in other educational efforts promoting soil conservation while he taught vo-ag and served as the FFA advisor at West Washington High School.
After retiring from teaching, Brown became a certified soil scientist. He has given countless demonstrations to various groups on spoil conservation topics. He also was instrumental in helping the Washington County SWCD obtain EPA 319 grants for special watershed projects within the district.
Brown's enthusiasm for conservation is contagious. Many of his former students who are active in agriculture today have been proponents of soil conservation as well.
Brown also serves on other groups and boards in his community. That helps him spread the word about soil conservation, and also helps him unite various groups to work on community projects that benefit everyone.
According to Donya Lester, emcee for the ceremony, part of the reason Brown was selected was that he is a role model for other supervisors, illustrating how to promote conservation both locally and on the state level.
And now, about this time after hearing all this information read about him, was when Jim Brown officially learned that yes, she was talking about him! Congratulations to the 2015 Supervisor of the Year, Jim Brown!