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Appalachian Mountain Club Maine Woods Initiative honored as 2018 Outstanding Cooperator of the Year

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On Sept. 21 the Piscataquis County Soil and Water Conservation District (PCSWCD) honored the Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) Maine Woods Initiative as the 2018 Cooperator of the Year. The award was presented at Medawisla Lodge for exceptional on-the-ground conservation efforts, educational outreach and overall excellence in sustainable management of the land.

The Cooperator of the Year award is given yearly by PCSWCD to recognize a partner in the Piscataquis County that practices conservation efforts on their land. The award ceremony began with Ben Naumann from USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) presenting the stream restoration and aquatic connectivity projects being completed in partnership with Appalachian Mountain Club.

PCSWCD Appalachian Mountain Club

Photo courtesy of PCSWCD
COOPERATOR OF THE YEAR — Present for the recent AMC Maine Woods Initiative Cooperator the Year presentation were, from left, William London, William London & Son; Ben Naumann, NRCS fish biologist; Jaime Sandoval, NRCS district conservationist; Janet Sawyer, PCSWCD board member; Steve Tatko, AMC land manager; Carol Weymouth, MACD executive director; Dan Rinard, AMC Maine operations director; Scott Carter, NRCS agricultural engineer; and Sarah Robinson, PCSWCD executive director.

The relationship began in 2011 and blossomed into a very solid and trusting collaboration, resulting in 42 completed projects and continuing until 2020. The overall goal for NRCS is to support America’s farmers, ranchers, and in this case forest landowners to assist in keeping working lands working, boost rural economies, increase the competitiveness of American agriculture, and improve the quality of our air, water, soil, and habitat. The stream restoration projects were a success with support from AMC Land Manager Steve Tatko. Tatko ended the ceremony with a tour of the property at the newly built Medawisla lodge, showcasing two of the projects AMC had done on Second Roach Pond and the Roach River.

Kacey Weber, PCSWCD educational coordinator, spoke at the ceremony about AMC and PCSWCD collaboration with the Teen Wilderness Expedition, a youth program PCSWCD offers every summer. Weber also shared a letter written from Dawn McLaughlin, teacher from Milo, who participates in AMC’s A Mountain Classroom program and the positive impact the program has on her students. PCSWCD Executive Director Sarah Robinson, Maine Association of Conservation Districts (MACD) Executive Director Carol Weymouth and Janet Sawyer, PCSWCD board member, awarded and presented sentiments to AMC for their overall excellence in conservation.

Congratulations once again to the AMC Maine Woods Initiative. For more information on the Cooperator of the Year Award given to AMC or any other PCSWCD events, programs or workshops, please follow the district on Facebook or contact 564-2321 extension 3 or info@piscataquisswcd.org.

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