DeKalb County Soil and Water Conservation District

Board of Directors:    Nolan Johnson, Chairperson
                                             Janel Rogers, Secretary
                                             Connie Fullerton, Treasurer
                                             Steve Graber
                                             Kerry Carnahan

     942 West Fifteenth Street
     Auburn, IN 46706

Phone:  260-925-5620, ext. 3
Fax:  260-925-1471
Office Hours:  Mon.-Fri. 7am-4pm

District Employees: 
Chadwick Appleman, Natural Resource Coordinator; Email:
Lee Anne Jacobs, Environmental Education Coordinator; Email:
Julie Knudson, Clerical Assistant


History of DeKalb County Soil and Water Conservation District

The DeKalb County Soil and Water Conservation District was organized in March of 1947.  The State Soil and Water Conservation Committee appointed two landowners from the county to serve as supervisors.  Landowners then elected three others from the county for a total of five supervisors as the District’s governing body.  Each supervisor was elected or appointed for a three-year term.  The first Board members were John D. Smith-Union Township, Russell Housel-Butler Township, Kenneth Holman-Franklin Township, Lawrence Votrie-Richland Township, and Arlo King-Smithfield Township.

Today five supervisors, three elected and two appointed, govern the District by serving staggered three year terms.

About the DeKalb County Soil and Water Conservation District

Soil and Water Conservation Districts (SWCD) are legal subdivisions of state government.  The DeKalb County SWCD is responsible for leadership in conservation of soil, water and related natural resources within DeKalb County.  To fulfill it's role, the DeKalb County SWCD works with local government agencies, citizens groups, and individuals to correct existing soil and water problems and to develop DeKalb County's natural resources to proper and full use. 

SWCD operations are financed through state and county appropriations, money earned by SWCD projects, and contributions from private sources.  The DeKalb County SWCD Board of Supervisors meet regularly at 7:30 p.m. on the third Thursday of each month in the SWCD office building located in Auburn, which are open to the public.

The District does not have the power of eminent domain, does not have the power to tax or bond, and has no regulatory power.  It cannot replace or duplicate the functions of the local government units.  Cooperation with the local SWCD is voluntary.

The boundaries of the DeKalb County Soil and Water Conservation District are those of DeKalb County Indiana covering 232,259 acres.


Vision of DeKalb County Soil and Water Conservation District:

Leading the community to influence water quality and land use decisions that promote a healthy environment.


Mission of DeKalb County Soil and Water Conservation District:

Leadership in soil and water conservation.

Our Mission Statement:
Provide everyone information and services for the responsible use of our natural resources.

What We Do:


Administer Indiana state law 327 IAC 15-5, commonly known as "Rule 5".  The purpose of Rule 5 is to reduce and control the discharge of pollutants, principally sediment, from those construction sites where total land disturbance is equal to or greater than 5 acres.  Success is accomplished mainly through education of "operators" on how to control erosion on a construction site and subsequent  off-site sedimentation.  Rule 5 also includes compliance and enforcement capabilities.


Partner with the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to promote conservation practices.  The NRCS is a division of the United States Department of Agriculture.  Popular USDA cost-share programs include the Conservation Reserve program.  General technical assistance is also available.  Contact David Hines, District Conservationist at (260) 925-5620.   Other "Conservation Partnership" groups include the Indiana Department of Natural Resources and the Purdue Extension Service.


Aggressively seek out external funds in the form of State, Federal and private grants to support new and innovative projects.


Perform Certified Wetland Delineations free of charge to all divisions of DeKalb County government, and to other organizations for a reasonable charge.


Work closely with schools to establish and enhance environmental curricula.


Remain involved with various environmental groups and agencies that strive to improve the quality of our local environment by working hand-in-hand with industry, citizens, environmental groups and governments.  Success has been achieved by balancing environmental, economic, and social values.


Provide answers to many questions that the community may have.  Such questions have been in regards to nuisance animals, where tree seedlings can be purchased, and pond construction.  Have a question?  Call us.  If we cannot answer your question directly, we will help you make contact with those who will know the answer.

About our budget:
Soil and Water Conservation District Employees are DeKalb County employees.  Most district activities and operating activities are supported by a small yearly State allocation, and by monies raised by District services.

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