REDLANDS, Calif., Nov. 19, 2012 – The Inland Empire Resource Conservation District (IERCD) was honored as an “Outstanding District of the Year” at a well-attended USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Partnership Awards Luncheon during the California Association of Resource Conservation Districts’ (CARCD) 67th Annual Conference held in San Diego on Nov. 15.
Board President Paul Williams accepted the prestigious award presented by Acting NRCS State Conservationist Jeff Burwell in recognition of the district’s commitment to natural resource conservation and outreach to schools and communities. IERCD was among only four award winning conservation districts from around the state, with one honoree in each of NRCS’s four administrative areas in California.
“RCD’s are one of NRCS’s key partners in conservation, and we have a long and successful history together," said Burwell. "I applaud this year’s four outstanding districts of the year for their dedication to partnerships, innovation, and outstanding work in getting conservation on the ground in California."
IERCD has made removing invasive plant species, protecting local waterways, restoring degraded wildlife habitats and installing pollinator-friendly hedgerows as key priorities within Riverside and San Bernardino counties.
Furthermore, IERCD has been an outstanding partner to local schools by bringing the conservation message into the classroom. IERCD has hosted nearly 800 classroom presentations benefitting nearly 20,000 students. They also organized afterschool programs for economically-disadvantaged youth and developed a conservation curriculum for students of all ages.
“We are very appreciative for the continued partnership with the Redlands NRCS Field Office and look forward to future collaboration that will better serve our community," said Williams. “The partnership that has been established between the IERCD and NRCS has proven to be an invaluable resource that has greatly increased our level of outreach and technical support within the District.”