NEWBERRY — Previously employed as a bookkeeper at Newberry Middle School, also working with the Office of Child Nutrition, Annette Davis desired something a bit more challenging.
After spotting an ad in The Newberry Observer, Davis said she visited the USDA service center and spoke with the employees.
“I just knew that was were I needed to be,” Davis said.
Davis is now the only employee at the Newberry Soil and Water Conservation District. She also serves as the chartering executive director of the Keep Newberry County Beautiful affiliate program.
What is the Newberry Soil and Water Conservation District?
“The Newberry Soil and Water Conservation District is the ‘local voice’ in natural resources conservation. We work in partnership with the state agency, S.C. Department of Natural Resources, Land, Water, and Conservation Division (S.C. DNR LW&CD) and our federal partner is the United States Department of Agriculture - Natural Resources Conservation Service (USDA NRCS). There are 46 conservation districts in the state and over 3,000 in the USA.”
How long have you been with the Newberry Soil and Water Conservation District (NSWCD) and what is your job description?
“I have been with the NSWCD for approximately 14 years. As for my job description, two positions were combined into one, District Manager and Education Coordinator. As the District Manager I am responsible for the daily operations management of the District. I handle all the business items such as meeting agendas, minutes, all bookkeeping, accounting, program management. As the Education Coordinator, I am responsible for the educational and outreach components such as school programs.”
Can you describe your work with “Keep Newberry County Beautiful (KNCB)?”
“The mission objectives of KNCBB works hand in hand with those of the NSWCD. They are beautification, recycling, anti-litter, and natural resources conservation. Right now, anti-litter is the top priority of the KNCB program. We must educate everyone that litter does hurt our environment, it also weakens our chances of local industry and business locating in our area. Working with children to teach them the importance of recycling and anti-litter is vitally important. Instilling in them to do the right thing will hopefully stay with them throughout their lives. Teaching adults is much more difficult. We get set in our ways and don’t accept change very well.”
Davis also stressed the importance of grants and donations to the work they do for the community. They just received two anti-litter grants for cigarette litter throughout Newberry County.
What can the citizens of Newberry do to make it more beautiful?
Davis said there are several steps citizens can take to help Newberry County look its best. A few of those include getting involved in programs such as Keep Newberry Beautiful, being careful not to litter, recycling, as well as talking to friends and neighbors and explaining how litter hurts the community.
“I encourage all citizens to get involved in cleaning up Newberry County. One person at a time is a step in the right direction. We can help you organize a clean-up program in your area of Newberry County. We have the supplies and are awaiting your call.”
What is the most exciting part of your job?
“I will not go down in history for some major contribution, but I do sincerely believe that my work is making a small contribution to conserving the natural resources in Newberry County and other location as well. Even though it’s nice to see how far we’ve come, one quick look around the planet reminds us how much work is still to be done.”
Davis also expressed her excitement of working with children at their Camp Conservation held each summer where she teaches children about soil, water, air, plants, animals, wildlife, and many other topics.