Jeff O'Connor - Chairman
Jim Frogge - Vice Chairman
Alan Wissmiller - Secretary
Larry Kirchner - Treasurer
Dave Peters - Director
John Settle | Ed Brown
Emilie Janes - Resource Conservationist
Linda Settle - Administrative Coordinator
Crystal Sauder - Conservation Assistant, Educational Outreach
Dakota Behrends - Conservation Assistant, Ag Outreach
See our Staff Bios below!
Conservation Assistant: Educational Outreach, Urban Conservation, & Grant Writing
I grew up on my family's farm right outside of Roanoke. My passion for conservation has been influenced by growing up in an agricultural community and my experiences at Olivet Nazarene University. In May of 2019, I graduated from ONU with a B.S. in Zoology.
I am a Conservation Assistant for the district and work in Educational Outreach, Urban Conservation, and am in the process of learning how to write grants. I help teachers bring current, and important, conservation topics into their classrooms. I am working on expanding our Urban Conservation programs to reach members of the community. I am also learning how to write grants to bring additional funding to the district.
During my free time, I enjoy birding, hiking with my dog, Ducky, drinking coffee, sewing/quilting, and working on my forever growing insect collection!
Conservation Assistant: Ag Outreach, Cost-Share Programs, & Social Media/Photography
Growing up on my family's grain and livestock farm outside of Clifton has really sparked my passion for agriculture and agriculture communications. In December of 2018, I graduated from Illinois State University with a B.S. in Agriculture Business.
I serve as a Conservation Assistant in Agriculture Outreach for the district. I work directly with farmers/producers to help establish and maintain conservation practices. I work with the Department of Ag and producers to get them involved in cost-share programs. I also am heavily involved with our social media presence and provide a lot of the photography that is used.
When I'm not serving the district, I am usually baling hay and helping on the farm. In my free time, I really enjoy barrel racing, working out, photography, golfing, and playing darts.
Resource Conservationist & District Manager
My roots are anchored on a five acre hobby farm in the rural outskirts of Peotone. Growing up surrounded by fields and forest instilled in me a passion for the outdoors, and an appreciation for the agricultural community. In 2016, I graduated from Olivet Nazarene University with a B.S. in Zoology.
In addition to serving as the RC and managing the Kankakee County SWCD, I work as an adjunct lab professor for the biology department at ONU. I have a passion for conservation and community outreach, and feel blessed that I have the opportunity to serve and grow in my local community.
In my free time, I enjoy hiking, macro photography, birding, and forever expanding my nerdy insect collection!