Hillsborough Soil and Water
"Conservation is everybody's business"
Governed by an elected board of five supervisors, the Hillsborough Soil and Water Conservation District is one of nearly 3,000 conservation districts nationwide. We're driven to educate, communicate, assist, support, coordinate and promote best conservation practices to families, farmers, schools, civic clubs, businesses, individuals and agricultural interests. Conservation is everybody's business as we strive to become better stewards of natural resources in rural, urban, inner-city and suburban settings.
Kathy Eckdahl, chair
Andrew Brooks, vice chair
Sonja P. Brookins, treasurer
Karen Cox Jaroch, supervisor
Mark Proctor, supervisor
" . . . that I will, to the best of my ability, defend from waste the natural resoures of the District, its soils and minerals, its forests, its water and wildlife . . . "
— from the HSWCD's Oath of Office
HSWCD Executive Director Betty Jo Tompkins, left, with board supervisors, from left, Sonja P. Brookins, treasurer (Seat 4); Karen Cox Jaroch (Seat 2); Kathy Eckdahl, chair (Seat 1); and Andrew Brooks, vice chair (Seat 5).
Not pictured: Mark Proctor (Seat 3), selected by board vote June 2, 2021 to fill the seat filled previously by Michael Hepburn, who passed away March 19, 2021.
Next Meeting Date: AUGUST 10, 2022 / 4:30pm
FL Strawberry Growers Association
13138 Lewis Gallagher Road, Plant City
2022 Regular Meeting Dates:
Oct. 12, Dec. 14
The annual challenge kicks off the weekend before Earth Day and runs through National Arbor Day and Soil Stewardship Week. Nonprofits, schools, businesses, clubs, chambers of commerce, churches, families, neighborhoods, individuals and more, working in inner-city, urban, suburban and rural settings, showcase their work to grow, preserve, protect and recycle natural resources. Action Awareness Projects include beach and bay cleanups, roadside litter pickups, rain barrel workshops, tree plantings, community gardens, landscape beautifications and more. See: 2021 Hillsborough 100 Conservation Challenge
Arbor Day tree planting at Yates Elementary.
Fairs, Festivals, Events
Visit us annually at family-friendly events focused on the natural resources we hold dear. Kick off the year with the Florida State Fair and the world-renowned Florida Strawberry Festival and embrace the fall with the Hillsborough County Fair. Engage with the Hillsborough 100 Conservation Challenge, running from Earth Day through Arbor Day and Soil Stewardship Week. Add to that a host of other community events, including Clean Air Fair, Earth Fest, Florida Ag Expo and the Go Green Festival. We promote as well functions presented by local schools, chambers of commerce, service clubs, youth organizations and more.
A spark of adventure, a ray of sunshine, an invitation to apply emerging skills and talents to real-world challenges. What better way to engage today's youth in the work of conservation. Annual poster, speech, photography and land-judging contests. AgVenture at
the Florida State Fairgrounds for third-graders. The Envirothon "Environmental Olympics" for high school students. We support 4-H, FFA, Key Club, Rotoract, Interact, Leo Club, scouts and more. And all schools, kids, clubs and families are invited to participate in the annual Hillsborough 100 Conservation Challenge.
The federal 2014 Farm Bill, administered by the USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service, provides for a variety of cost-share programs for environmental stewardship programs on agricultural lands, with an emphasis on working land conservation projects. The HSWCD helps eligible producers and landowners secure these grants in their work to voluntarily implement practices to protect soil, water, air, wildlife habitats and related natural resources. From structural and management projects, to mobile irrigation labs, the HSWCD is your source for finding the aid you need.
The mission of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) is to develop knowledge relevant to agricultural, human and natural resources and to make that knowledge available to residents and businesses to sustain and enhance the quality of human life. The Hillsborough County Extension office is in Seffner, at County Road 579, research-based information and assistance is available through workshops, classes, a teaching garden, projects, publications and more. The UF/IFAS Gulf Coast Reserach and Education Center is in Wimauma, at 14625 CR 672.
Our Cooperating Partners are an essential element to the work of conservation education and engagement in the Tampa Bay area. We welcome their support in a myriad of ways and to their sponsorship, support, promotion and/or participation in our annual Hillsborough 100 Conservation Challenge. Scroll through our slides to give witness to the many schools, clubs, service organizations, businesses, chambers, governmental entities and more that give a boost to our replicable community-wide effort to conserve our natural resources.
Association of Florida Conservation Districts, Tampa Bay Association of Environmental Professionals, Florida Association of Environmental Professionals, The Southern Peach Company, Lions International Leo Clubs, Berkeley Preparatory School, Hillsborough Community College Brandon Campus, Seffner Community Garden, Rotary International Interact Clubs, Green Party
Display at the Hillsborough 100 Kickoff Luncheon 2019
Miracle Gro, Lipman Family Farms, Mosaic, Florida Strawberry Growers Association, Odiorne Insurance Agency, M&B Products
In accordance with federal law and the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, the Hillsborough Soil and Water Conservation District is prohibited from discriminating in its programs and services on the basis of religion, age, race, color, national origin, gender or disability.
The Hillsborough Soil and Water Conservation District is committed to ensuring accessibility of its website to people with disabilities. We are working to increase accessibility and usage of this website and in so doing to adhere to many of the available standards and guidelines. If an alternative means of access to any information on this website is needed, please contact us.
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Website Design: Linda Chion, HSWCD Computer Graphics Technician