Markita Givens, Civil Engineering Technician
Markita was born in Tennessee but lived in Scottsville, Kentucky most of her life. She is an Allen County High School graduate and attended college at Western Kentucky University and Bowling Green Technical College. She started her career path with NRCS in administration, but knew she wanted to work more directly with landowners. Markita pursued that desire and now enjoys her work both in the office and out on the land, enjoying Kentucky's beautiful scenery, wildlife, and people.
Over 25 years ago, Markita was introduced to the Soil Conservation Service (now Natural Resources Conservation Service) by Susan Hatcher, a friend who worked for the agency at the time. She started as a clerk typist in the Bowling Green Area Office and remained in that position for nearly 5 years. The agency advertised an upward mobility training program in 1991 and Markita joined the program, training as a civil engineering technician. A few years later, she was selected as a civil engineering technician for what was NRCS Area 2 at the time.
A promotion opportunity became available a few years later and Markita was selected as the administrative coordinator for the Area. She soon became the administrative coordinator for the state technical team, working out of the Glasgow office. About a year later, Markita returned to her administrative coordinator position in the Bowling Green Area Office where she remained for the next four years.
Agency restructuring in 2001 relocated the Bowling Green office to Madisonville. It was at that time that Markita was reassigned as a civil engineering technician in the newly established Bowling Green Technical Office. Now 12 years later, Markita provides technical assistance to 18 counties on a regular basis, but has worked in 58 of Kentucky's 120 counties. Her work has included survey, design and construction on waste holding facilities through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), stream bank stabilization through the Emergency Watershed Protection Program (EWP), reclamation of abandoned mine land, repairs on watershed dams, and wetland restoration through the Wetland Reserve Program (WRP) to name a few.
Markita said, "The diversity of the work is what I like best about my job, both in the different locations and in the different type of work." Some projects are more challenging than others. Markita recalls one landowner that had a reputation for being a challenging customer, "It felt great when he said he was happy with the job and thanked me for the good work." Moments like that have encouraged Markita throughout her career.
She and her husband Craig, who works as a lead district conservationist with NRCS in Russellville, have one son, Matthew Brown. They love spending time with their two granddaughters, Mattie Grace and Paisley Reese and their grand dog Jack. Markita also enjoys yoga, traveling and working in the yard. She is eligible to retire in just four years, but for now, Markita enjoys each day on the job, helping improve the land for years to come.