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Featured Employee: Ismael ReyesIsmael Reyes working in field with fellow employees

Location: West Palm Beach, Florida

Employee Job Title: Area Resource Conservationist

Date: April 2008

Working Environment is Key to Service

Ismael (Maelo) Reyes was born in Chicago, IL in 1964. He and his Puerto Rican parents returned to Puerto Rico in 1968. Maelo graduated from the University of Puerto Rico in 1987 with a B.S. degree in Agronomy and Soils. He has overseas experience working in Puerto Rico and Central America. Other trainings include Radio Broadcast and Professional Audio Recording.

Maelo’s career encompasses many fields in natural resources conservation starting as a soil scientist in south Florida in 1988. Later he became a soil conservationist. His professional training also includes a few years as a soil chemist assistant for a private sugarcane corporation in the Everglades Agricultural Area. He was a pioneer during the development of the Mobile Irrigation Laboratory program in the early 1990’s and assisted in the development of this technology. During the late 1990’s he was the Native American liaison and later a grazing lands specialist in south Florida. Maelo is presently the area resource conservationist for Area 4 in south Florida.

His accomplishments include assistance to field offices for planning and implementation of conservation practices on thousands of acres on many types of land uses, including citrus, vegetable and plant nursery irrigation design, grazing planning, wetland restoration, FSA wetlands determinations, and more. He has been instrumental in the promotion and implementation of all NRCS programs used in south Florida including, CTA, WRP, EQIP and WHIP. As ARC he facilitates the programs delivery by keeping the Area personnel trained and oversees the agronomic practice planning and application. He is also facilitating engineering practice planning and application. Maelo is driven by his passion for a great working environment. “The quality of our service is a reflection of the quality of our working environment.”

His radio broadcast and professional audio recording experiences have been instrumental in the development and promotion of NRCS’ Native American and Hispanic outreach program through radio spots, translations, and news releases in Spanish. His music is also used as part of NRCS’ outreach video production.

“Everything we have and do is based on the condition and availability of our natural resources. That makes our agency one of the most important agencies in our nation. That makes our clients and our people extremely needed and special.”