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The Dubois County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) held their 77th annual meeting on the evening of February 14th. A meal was served before attendants heard from the President of the Indiana Barn Foundation, Kent Yeager, followed by special awards presentations.

Yeager shared insight to “icons of the region” by highlighting important characteristics of Indiana barns. The mostly, but not exclusively, wooden pieces of history are distinguishable by their frames and features. He also shared information about the Indiana Barn Tax available to properties with special qualifications. More information can be found at

The Otto J Bauer Memorial Outstanding Conservation Farmer of the Year, Friend of Conservation, and River Friendly Farmer awards were presented by members of SWCD. Brenda Semersheim presented Joe Keusch with the Otto J Bauer Memorial Outstanding Conservation Farmer of the Year award. Pat Eckerle and Arlene Fleck, Supervisors of SWCD, announced Bart Pitstick as the recipient of the Friend of Conservation Award. SWCD Vice Chair, Glenn Goeppner, and Laura Fribley from ISDA honored Daryl Auffart and Scott Balsmeyer the River Friendly Farmer Award.

Future Farmers of America participants filled tables surrounding an informational booth with the SWCD partner reports for the year. Two more orders of business took place before the evening came to a close. An election of a new SWCD supervisor saw Brenda Sermersheim elected for her third term of service to the organization. A special honor was given to Judi Brown for 25 years of service to SWCD.

Members of the Soil and Water Conservation District held a reorganizational meeting following annual reports. Their mission continues to be the promotion of the vital benefits of protecting and preserving all natural resources, both agricultural and non-agricultural, to all citizens. 

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