August 18, 2022 - 9:33am --

Badertscher Wins Ohio Achievement Award

Mark Badertscher, Hardin County ANR Educator

Hardin County – Mark Badertscher was selected as one of two Ohio Agriculture and Natural Resources Extension Educators to be recognized for the National Association of County Agricultural Agents (NACAA) Achievement Award. The NACAA Achievement Award recognizes Extension Educators with less than ten years in the profession. The award was presented at the 2022 NACAA Annual Meeting and Professional Improvement Conference held in West Palm Beach, Florida July 18-21.

Badertscher has been the Agriculture and Natural Resources Extension Educator in Hardin County since June 2013. Over the past nine years, he has served as state chair of the JCEP Membership and Retention Committee and NACAA Agricultural Issues Committee. He serves as president of the Conservation Tillage Conference in Ohio. NACAA team awards include national winner in NACAA Search for Excellence Sustainable Agriculture, national finalist in Bound Book, and regional finalist in Video Recordings.

This Extension educator joined forces with the Ohio No-Till Council acting upon the recommendation of a local farmer to provide answers to the 2019 planting season challenges facing northwest Ohio farmers. A panel of 10 experts were summoned to Ohio Northern University in Ada to address prevented planting, cover crops, and crop insurance a week later. In addition to 157 producers in attendance, support was gathered to provide a professionally produced video that was later made available to farmers throughout Ohio and the corn belt highlighting this Cover Crops for Prevented Planting Acres event.

The Conservation Tillage Club breakfast meetings co-hosted by this educator in cooperation with OSU Extension, Soil and Water Conservation District, and Natural Resources Conservation Service in Hardin, Logan, and Union Counties which averages 65 farmers at each of the four meetings held in Hardin County. Each year this educator works with the planning committee to provide research-based programs featuring a grain marketing outlook, soybean and corn production agronomic topics, soil health or conservation issues, and water quality/nutrient management updates. Sponsors are obtained to cover expenses and CCA credits are offered.

Four statewide field days have been held in Hardin County in the past nine years. This educator worked together with the SWCD, Farm Bureau, and statewide conservation organizations to host three water quality-nutrient management field days to address this major issue in Ohio utilizing precision agriculture. In 2018, he worked cooperatively with Manure Management Field Specialist Glen Arnold and the SWCD to host the OSU Manure Science Review. In addition to these field days, countywide Twilight Tours have been held to compliment on-farm research and address local agricultural issues. As part of these field events, he has evaluated local program success and made changes according to clientele feedback.