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News Release

NRCS selects new conservationists for Central and Southern Aroostook offices

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BANGOR, Maine (June 10, 2020) – The USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has selected an experienced conservationist to serve as the district conservationist for its field offices in both Central and Southern Aroostook County, and has hired new employees to supplement staff in those offices.

Helena SwiatekHelena Swiatek – who serves as the NRCS district conservationist in the USDA Service Center in Houlton – will now also serve as the new district conservationist in Presque Isle.

Ethan Hill has been selected as a new soil conservationist in Presque Isle, and Dusty Lockman has been selected as a new soil conservation technician in Houlton.

All three will work with closely with local Soil & Water Conservation Districts and other local agencies to help agricultural producers and private landowners address natural resource concerns in Aroostook County.

“Helena is already well respected among the agriculture community in northern Maine, and she will add her wealth of conservation knowledge to this new assignment,” Acting NRCS State Conservationist Dan Schmidt said. “With the additions of Ethan and Dusty to the offices, the NRCS teams in Presque Isle and Houlton will continue to place high importance on the resource concerns in the area, like soil health, cropland, erosion and animal waste management.”Ethan Hill

Swiatek is originally from Kansas and has a Bachelor of Science degree in Forestry. She started with NRCS as a student trainee in Michigan in 2004, and worked in Wisconsin before coming to Maine in 2007. She has served as the district conservationist for Southern Aroostook for the past 12 years.

Hill grew up on a potato farm in Fort Fairfield, and after graduating from Presque Isle High School he served five years in the U.S. Marine Corps as a helicopter mechanic. He graduated from the University of Maine in 2019 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Forestry and Engineering Technology.

Lockman graduated from the University of Wyoming with a Bachelor of Science degree in Rangeland Ecology and Watershed Management. Before coming to NRCS he worked for a private consulting firm conducting wildlife and habitat work.
Dusty Lockman
Swiatek can be reached at

The USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) provides leadership and technical assistance to address natural resource conservation issues on private land. NRCS employees work to improve and protect natural resources in partnership with Maine's 16 Soil and Water Conservation Districts, federal, state and local agencies, farmers, landowners and communities. The partnership's commitment to conservation provides a solid foundation to a locally led program delivery system. The partnership is also committed to a voluntary, incentive-based approach to private land stewardship and conservation treatment.


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