(Posted Aug. 29, 2022)
The Madison Soil & Water Conservation District (SWCD) will hold an election for the district board of supervisors in conjunction with the district’s 75th Annual Banquet on Sept. 15 at the Procter Center, 11235 State Rte. 38 SE, London. Voting will be open from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., a tour of the Procter Center is set for 6 to 6:30, and the dinner starts at 6:30.
The public is welcome to attend. Tickets to the banquet are $20 ($15 for children 10 and younger) and may be purchased from any board supervisor or at the district office, 831 U.S. Hwy. 42 NE, London, or online at madisonsoilandwater.com.
Reservations are requested by Sept. 1. No tickets will be available at the door.
Candidates in this year’s election are Nancy Denes-Sparks and Suellen Graumlich Radabaugh.
Denes-Sparks, a resident of West Jefferson, has been a special education paraprofessional and job coach with Dublin City Schools for the 22 years. In January, she took the position of attendance counselor. She grew up in Jefferson Township on her family tree farm, Denes Tree Farm. She served on West Jefferson village council from 1994 to 1998. She volunteers with Sts. Simon and Jude Catholic Church, the West Jefferson Ox Roast and various organizations in the community. She also is a third generation 4-H family, with her oldest granddaughter taking a market goat and dairy feeder calf projects.
Denes-Sparks believes that Madison County has always been a strong agricultural county and that with current growth, there is a great need to make sure natural resources are protected. Many areas of the country struggle to maintain and collect quality water, so we need to be good stewards of our water and land for future generations, she said. Denes-Sparks knows she would have a lot to learn as a member of the board and welcomes the challenge to serve Madison County.
Radabaugh, a Mount Sterling resident, lives on a 97-acre farm. She has goats, chickens and other animals, as well as corn, soybeans and wheat. She was a teacher at Miami Trace High School from 1965 to 1991, where she taught biology and anatomy, as well as girls’ sports. She used to be on the scholarship committee for Madison-Plains.
Radabaugh’s biggest concern is the health of the environment. Everyone makes decisions that can have a big impact on the health of the creeks, she said. Anything put on the land by a landscaping company, resident, farmer, etc., can wash off if not properly managed. She would like to support programs that help young people to be adequately exposed to these topics. She hopes to bring ideas to the group, listen to others, and get new kinds of programs implemented to address local concerns. She views the board as a team, and she would like to be a team player.
To cast a vote, call or visit the Madison SWCD office, (740) 852-4003, to request an absentee ballot; vote at the Madison SWCD office during regular office hours through Sept. 20; or cast a ballot at the banquet on Sept. 15.
During the banquet, retiring supervisor Howard Yoder will be recognized for 14 years of service. Denes Farms LLC will be honored as the Cooperator of the Year. West Jefferson High School will be recognized for having Madison County’s top ranked Envirothon team. A slideshow will honor Madison SWCD’s 75th year.
The Madison SWCD, established in 1947, is a legal subdivision of state government that provides natural resource management assistance to county landowners and other units of local government. The district is funded by the Madison County commissioners. The county funds are supplemented by funding from the Ohio Department of Agriculture. The district is governed by a five-member board of county residents. Board members serve staggered, three-year terms.