Our staff at Holmes Soil & Water Conservation Distict is second to none. Keep on scrolling to learn more about our staff and how they can help you achieve your conservation goals.
Michelle Wood oversees the day to day operations of the district and the diverse activities offered to promote clean water and healthy soil. With a lifelong passion for the outdoors and a background in communications, she appreciates the conservation district grassroots model which enables the local board and staff to create programs that meet the conservation needs of Holmes County. Michelle is a member of several statewide committees, including the ODNR Parks Advisory Council and the Clean Ohio Fund Natural Resources Assistance Council. Contact Michelle at 330-674-2811 or at email@example.com
Joe Christner came to Holmes SWCD in 2001 with experience and knowledge drawn from 20-plus years of dairy farming. He grew up on a small farm near New Bedford, Ohio. His background interest and involvement in agriculture from the time he was a young man give him an empathy and understanding of the needs and concerns of today’s farmers. Joe can assist you with conservation plans for your farming operation, including nutrient management planning and record keeping. He will provide information on cover crops in your rotation which will improve soil health and reduce erosion. Water quality, soil health, and conserving the resources needed for the next generation and beyond is very important to Joe. He and his wife, Nina, have two daughters and five grandsons. He is involved in many areas of service at New Pointe Community Church.Contact Joe at 330-674-2811 or firstname.lastname@example.org
A Holmes County native, Jane joined the Holmes SWCD staff in 2015 after spending 16 years in public relations for a land-grant university. She holds a BS with distinction in agricultural communication from Purdue University and her master's program in mass communication at Purdue focused on science and risk communication. Jane has a passion for educating youth about the science of conservation and agriculture and is an active volunteer in local 4-H and Scout programs. She is excited to bring that passion back to Holmes County where she manages educational outreach programs, social media, and fiscal administration for the district. Jane raises horses and sheep on the family farm where she was raised south of Nashville along with her husband Craig and her three children: Aubree, Garrett & Tristan. You can reach Jane at 330-674-2811 or email@example.com
John Lorson came to Holmes SWCD after having left a career in higher education quite literally for greener pastures. He holds a BS in Biology from The University of Akron where he later worked for ten years, most recently as coordinator of the Wayne College Holmes campus. John also spent 15 years as an engineering technician with the city of Orrville and still serves in his hometown as a city council representative. Local residents may recognize John from his weekly humor column in The Daily Record and Shopper News—a collaboration with his wife, Kristin that is now in its 20th year. He is thrilled to be working as a technician in the field of conservation—a great crossroad of his education and experience. Reach John with your conservation concerns at 330-674-2811 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Karen is the most recent addition to the Holmes SWCD staff. Since joining the staff in January 2016, she has delved into the cover crop program, soil testing, nutrient recommendations, nutrient trading programs, and water sampling. A 2009 graduate of Miami University’s Western College program with a Bachelor of Philosophy in environmental studies, she has worked in a variety of fields in southern Ohio, California, and Colorado. She was most recently employed with the Farm Service Agency in Hamilton, Ohio, but is happy to return home and assist the Holmes community in agricultural and conservation pursuits. Karen can be reached at 330-674-2811 or email@example.com
Dean Slates joined the Holmes SWCD staff in May 2006 as a part-time program assistant, having devoted more than 50 years to the Ohio State University and the furtherance of commercial agriculture in Northeast Ohio. Born and raised on a Carroll County, Ohio dairy farm, Dean holds both bachelor and master of science degrees in ag education from the Ohio State University. After spending 5 years as a vocational agriculture teacher at Norwayne High School, Dean joined Ohio State University where is served as an agricultural Extension agent for 33 years in both Stark and Holmes counties. He and his wife Carol moved to Holmes County in 1988 along with his two daughters, both of whom graduated from West Holmes High School and hold multiple degrees from Ohio State. He currently holds an emeritus appointment with OSU, working in the area of pesticide application technology. In 2010, he was elected to the Ohio State Farm Science Review and in 2015, completed his 50th year of participation and presentation at Farm Science Review. In his spare time, Dean is co-owner and operator of Northeast Ohio Milk Quality Services Ltd. Contact Dean at 330-674-2811.
Chuck is the District Conservationist for Holmes and Coshocton counties with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service. He began his career as a summer trainee in 1981 with the Soil Conservation Service and has been located in Ashland, Delaware, Harrison, and Fairfield counties prior to moving to Holmes County August of 1984. He graduated from The Ohio State University in 1983 with a Bachelor of Science degree in agriculture. Chuck is married to Beth (Oswald) and resides near Berlin. Chuck and Beth have two sons, Luke and Cole located in Columbus. He also has a 215 acre farm in Knox County that he owns in partnership with his dad and brother. Many conservation practices have been implemented and maintained as part of the operation. Contact Chuck at 330-674-2811 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Gina joined USDA-NRCS as a part-time intern in 2004 until she was brought in full-time in early 2006 as a Grasslands Specialist for the Zanesville Area Office. Later in 2012, she became a Resource Conservationist for Coshocton and Holmes counties. She holds a BS in Conservation from Kent State University. While she is based in Coshocton and can be reached there at (740) 622-8087 Ext 7229, she’s also a frequent visitor to the Holmes office and can be reached at (330) 674-2811. You can also reach her via email, which is email@example.com