Sycamore Trails Resource Conservation & Development Council
Respecting nature. Conserving resources. Developing communities. 
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Sycamore Trails RC&D
Respecting nature.  Conserving resources.  Developing communities.STRC&D is a 501(c)3 tax exempt organization and is incorporated as a not-for-profit in the state of Indiana.

The STRC&D Council was organized by local people in 1970.  We are a group of volunteers dedicated to providing a vehicle for dealing with local environmental and economic issues through citizen participation.  Our mission is to provide a framework for regional action on issues that are of concern to our local communities and environment.  Our major strength lies in our interest and ability to respond to issues that local citizens bring to our attention. Our role is to help individuals and organizations by providing:   

1) coordination and communication among our existing group of volunteers.  We currently have Resource Committees function in the areas of:  forestry, invasive plants, environmental education, and restoration of abandoned mine land.

2) 501 (c) 3 services to emerging groups and help them as they organize.  Friends of Shakamak is currently functioning as a committee of STRC&D until they can obtain independent  status.

3)  office and communication assistance to help organize action groups in the pursuit of improving the environmental and economic status of the local area.  New Resource Committees are formed as needs are identified and volunteers step forward to take action.

Our area includes the West Central Indiana Counties of:  Clay, Fountain, Montgomery, Owen, Parke, Putnam, Sullivan, Vermillion, and Vigo. 

We are a member organization with a member-elected Board of Directors.  Until April of 2011, STRC&D was partially funded by the USDA through the National Resource Conservation Service.  We are now a totally independent organization.  We invite you to become a Sponsoring Member  ($20 dollar/yr membership fee) and join us in working to improve the quality of life in west central Indiana. 

Meet The Board

Jan Came – Vigo County

   Because I do respect Nature, believe in conserving resources, and enjoy educating the community of concerning environmental issues.  My position as the Urban Conservationist for the Vigo Co. SWCD has allowed me to educate both children and adults.   I enjoy assisting the public with concerns they may have on environmental issues.   Most of my experience pertains to water quality issues and soil erosion.  I enjoy organizing workshops.  I serve as the Secretary for the STRC&D Education Committee.   I am the N-SW Region Director for the Indiana District Employees Association (covering 12 counties).  I help with Adopt-a-Road clean up through the Vigo Co. SWCD, and am the bookkeeper for 2 Conservancy Districts in Vigo County

John Gettinger  -  Sullivan County

   I want to help with the Sycamore Trails objectives.  I bring the experiences of 5 years as chair of Turtle Creek 319 Watershed Project and member of nationally acclaimed Busseron Watershed project.  I am an owner of Farmland that installs conservation practices.  I taught for 37 years and have been on the Board for Education Programs.


Brian Gilmartin   -  Putnam County

   I am 64 years old and have lived in Cloverdale, Putnam County, Indiana for the last ten years. My wife Linda and I own a 55 acre tree farm and tending to our woods is one of the most enjoyable activities of our retirement. All the knowledge I have acquired about taking care of our woods I have obtained through being a member of the STRC&D Forestry and Invasive Plants Committees. By being a member of STRC&D Board perhaps I can give back to the organization a small portion of all I have received. I also feel that all of the other activities of STRC&D have a very positive impact on all of the communities of our nine -county area, and I will enjoy supporting those activities by being a member of the board.

   Before I retired to Indiana I was a practicing attorney in New York for 32 years, during which time I advised and represented many and various small businesses. I hope that this background and experience can be of benefit to STRC&D and its Board of Directors.  I have served on the STRC&D Board since 2003.

   In addition to my work with STRC&D, I am a member of my church council and its finance committee, and I am chairperson of both the Putnam County Planning Commission and the Board of Zoning Appeals.


Steve Herbert   -  Vigo County

   I believe that a very real need exists in the rural communities to offer educational hands-on programs that are aimed at improving the quality of our environment and our lives, and that the best way to meet those needs is through the combined efforts of concerned and altruistic people who live there.  The RC&D Program offers that opportunity.

   I have been an active member of the Sycamore Trails Board for over 12 years, active in the extension programs within Vigo County, and a 28 year employee of the Indiana Department of Natural Resources.  I have been active on the Fish & Wildlife, Forestry, Abandoned Mine Lands, and various administrative committees of the council.  I am a trained environmental biologist/ecologist, land reclamation specialist, and long time administrator.  I am also the best fisherman I know.


Raoul Moore  -  Montgomery County

  I serve on the board to leverage my activities trying to change this part of the world.  I have been on the Board since 1998 and on the Forestry Committee over 10 years. I am one of the original members of STRC&D Invasive Plants Committee.  I’m a past member and chair of West Central Indiana Solid Waste District Citizen’s Advisory Committee and Sugar Creek Advisory Board. I have over 30 years experience managing an active tree farm in Montgomery County.  I have been on local radio station for 15 minutes/month for over 20 years, had a Journal Review newspaper column for many years, and just started a new column in “The Paper” of Montgomery County on environmental issues.



Gerald “Bud” Sharp  -  Putnam County

   I believe the organization does many great things for conservation, the environment and the citizens of the area it serves.  I believe STRC&D is in an exciting time with the changes to the organizational structure and am continuing as a board member to see it get stabilized and financially growing.  I have served on the STRC&D Board since 1995, serving as an officer most of that time, and was a founding member of the Grants Committee and the Land Trust Committee.  I have also represented STRC&D on the Indiana League for a few years.  I am a land owner who wants to improve the forest on it. I am very politically active and have many friends and family throughout the nine-county area.  

Jim Spence  -  Montgomery County

   I strongly support the mission of Sycamore Trails, as I continue to serve on the board.  I have over 20 years in corporate management, and membership on two other nonprofit boards. I have been on the STRC&D Board since 2000, and have served as an officer in three positions over eight years. I am also involved in SWCD activities, am a local government official, a member of two local conservation organizations, and Friends of Turkey Run and Shades State Parks.


Karen Staub  -  Parke County

   I was learning about natural resources before trees, plants, mammals, etc., were part of my vocabulary.  Every chance I get, I find myself having a need to educate anyone about the birds, bees, plants and trees.  My first formal teaching experience on Natural Resources was as a park Naturalist at Shakamak State Park 39 years ago.  I also worked as a Naturalist at Lieber State Recreation Area from 2000 to 2005.

   I have been given many names over the years:  “Miss Nature,”  “Artist,”  “Chair Lady” and most recently “Invasive Queen.”  Officially, I can put BS (ISU), MAT (DePauw), Advanced Master Gardener, and Master Naturalist behind my name.  Being on the Board keeps me abreast of activities that I can either act on or participate in.