Nancy Walker of Unity and her husband Glenn became interested in working with the Conservation District two years ago, when they attended the Winter Tree ID Naturalist program. Nancy has attended 7 out of the 14 Naturalist Series programs that have been offered in the past 3 years. Shortly after their first program, they donated a granite bench to the Sullivan County Complex in memory of both their parents, which today graces Jessie’s Trail to the Eco-Ag Center.
Since then, Nancy has volunteered almost weekly with the Conservation District and Natural Resources Department. She helped collect and process plant sale orders throughout the winter months, sorted and packaged pollinator plant seeds to promote native pollinators with a group of garden club members, and surveyed County lands for rare and unusual wildflowers in the spring with Melissa Page, who's son benefited from SCCD programs in schools.
This past summer she helped to assess and document headstones in the old County cemetery with Natural Resources staff. The cemetery project was interrupted when the Sullivan County Cidery opened this fall. Nancy and Glenn both helped the public press apples into cider. The cemetery project will resume this month and we'll be asking for help with the Plant Sale again in the New Year!
When asked why she became a volunteer Nancy replied, "My passion is nature so when I discovered SCCD and the Natural Resources Department and found that they were looking for volunteers - I couldn’t resist getting involved. When I was asked if I wanted to go tromping around in the woods looking for and recording ephemeral (at the time I didn’t even know what that meant) plants behind the building complex, I knew it was right up my alley. Going out once a week for almost a month was my spring entertainment. I not only helped Lionel & Dawn by finding and recording the plants and their locations, but I was able to be in a part of Unity I had not been in before and to learn so much more about what kind of plants were out there. So much more than I had previously known. And, volunteering wasn’t just the enjoyment that I was looking for, it was feeling good about contributing to a cause that I care about. Making sure the natural resources we have in Sullivan County are safe and will be there to pass on to future generations."
Nancy is being honored this month as the Conservation District's Volunteer of the Year at our 73rd Annual Awards Dinner.
She has currently donated 62 hours of her time in 2019 alone.