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Salem Conservationist Wins Regional Earth Team Award

Kelly Shrable (left), Natural Resources Conservation Service district conservationist in the Salem Field Service Center, is presented the 2012 NRCS Earth Team Central Region Employee Award by Erica Westbrook, assistant state conservationist for field operations, northwest area; and Mike Sullivan, Arkansas NRCS state conservationist.


Little Rock, Arkansas – May 2, 2012 – Kelly Shrable, district conservationist in the Salem Field Service Center, has been named the winner of a multi-state USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) award.  Shrable received the 2012 NRCS Earth Team Central Region Employee Award from Mike Sullivan, Arkansas NRCS state conservationist, and Erica Westbrook, Assistant State Conservationist for Field Operations, during a ceremony at an NRCS northwest area meeting in Russellville on April 25.

The Earth Team is a program which partners volunteers with NRCS employees to help conserve, maintain and improve natural resources and the environment.  The award recognized Shrable as the top NRCS employee in the 15-state central region for working with staff and Earth Team volunteers.

“Kelly is responsible for managing, enlisting, assigning duties and keeping up-to-date records on 29 active Earth Team volunteers,” Sullivan said praising Shrable’s selection.  “In fiscal year 2011, volunteers donated 116 hours in Fulton County.  Armed with GPS and digital cameras, volunteers routinely completed construction checkouts, performed conservation field work, and made it quicker for Shrable to get conservation practices certified and payments made to Farm Bill participants.  Shrable’s work ethic, positive attitude and willingness to work with others have made him a very valuable asset to the Salem Field Office and the Earth Team Program.  This award is well deserved,” he said.

In fiscal year 2011, 743 Earth Team Volunteers in Arkansas donated 10,711 hours while working with NRCS on conservation projects.  Nationally, volunteers donated 435,653 hours of service to NRCS worth $9.3 million. Since being formed in 1985, more than a half-million Earth Team volunteers have donated $336 million worth of time to help NRCS with its conservation mission.

NRCS provides technical assistance to landowners, farmers, ranchers and others to reduce soil erosion, enhance water supplies, improve water quality, increase wildlife habitat, and reduce damages caused by floods and other natural disasters.

Additional information on the Earth Team Volunteer Program is available online at or by calling (toll-free) (888) 526-3227.