Working to engage ALL Benton County residents

By Heath Keirstead | July 2, 2020

Working to engage ALL Benton County residents in conservation and stewardship

We at Benton SWCD believe that everyone deserves to feel safe and supported in their exploration and enjoyment of the natural world. We are actively working to identify and remove barriers to participation in our organization and provide opportunities for all members of our community to engage in conservation and stewardship of natural resources.
Here are some of the actions we’ve taken:

  • We added a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion goal to our Strategic Action Plan.
  • We have updated our job applications and performance review process to encourage a more diverse work force.
  • We are working to develop partnerships with organizations that are led by people of color and other communities facing disparities.
  • We are actively engaged in training where we strive to understand systemic barriers to equity and inclusion of subordinated groups.

We know we have more work to do. We are in the process of developing a road map forward. And we want you to know we’re here to listen and learn, and then find ways to help you meet your conservation needs in ways that work for you.

About the Author

Heath Keirstead

Heath Keirstead manages Benton SWCD’s Communications and Community Engagement as well as the Native Plant Program and Youth Education. She has a Master’s in Soil Science from Oregon State University. With a dual passion for people and the planet, she loves building relationships with partners, customers, volunteers, and students.

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