Makeup of the SWCD
The SWCD is overseen by a locally elected board of directors, historically made up of farmers and ranchers living on the land. These are people who know first hand the issues that every other farmer in the county faces. Up until the 1990s, when the board hired a manager, the work was performed by the board with assistance from OSU Extension Agents and the USDA Soil Conservation Service (SCS).
In the past, SCS was on hand to provide needed technical support (by way of engineering, soil scientists, mapping, crop and range specialists) to assist the SWCD in addressing natural resource issues. At its peak in the late 1950s, SCS was providing a technical staff of four in Sherman County. While that partnership is still strong, USDA technical support has steadily declined.
Today, the SCS, now known as the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), provides a technical staff of two. In response to the loss of staff support and an increasing workload, the SWCD has slowly and steadily built its own technical capacity and currently employs a professional staff of four.