Statements from candidates for King Conservation District Board

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Recently we posted an article about the internet election for a position on the King Conservation Board.   To verify your eligibility to vote and get an online PIN for voting, follow this link.  For more information  check this site.
King Conservation District Board of Supervisors Candidate Statements

Bruce Elliott, Kent - I am a life-long resident of King County. I was raised on a Renton dairy, and raised my own family as a farmer in the Lower Green River Agricultural Production District. Our farm is part of the King County Farmland Preservation Program; stewardship and conservation are essential business practices to ensure we can produce cattle, corn and other crops each year – opportunities I hope to preserve for future generations. I put action to my passion for the future of local farming as a board member of the King-Pierce Farm Bureau.

My farm is the kind of place in the county where many conservation district issues meet. Agricultural drainage and flooding are perennial concerns. But water quality and quantity is a concern in urban areas as well. Proper drainage infrastructure and storm water management is essential to our quality of life, viability of our economy, and healthy environment.

The key to approaching conservation issues for a positive outcome is balance. We must seek solutions that are based in sound environmental science, while taking into account private property rights and pursuing first opportunities to work in partnership and cooperation with property owners. The KCD is a great resource to advise and assist property owners in conservation efforts. I hope to apply my knowledge and experience as a lifelong King County farmer and property owner to the conservation district’s mission of improving the natural and working environments in King County in partnership with the citizens who manage our resources on a daily basis.

Teri Herrera, Redmond - It is critical for the King Conservation District to have experienced leaders who are varied in their backgrounds and expertise who can represent both the rural and the urban communities of King County. I have strong skills of budgeting, consensus building, planning, negotiation, marketing, developing communication between individuals and groups, as well as the essential viewpoint of a property owner. In my successful real estate career, I know that property values increase with good stewardship by its owners. I understand the values that farm products, healthy rivers, salmon restoration, and a sustainable environment add to the quality of life in King County and the Puget Sound region.

I currently serve on KCD’s Citizen Advisory Committee and on the Small Cities Subcommittee. My experience has given me a unique perspective which enhances my ability to facilitate dialogue between King County, local jurisdictions, landowners and the KCD. It is my goal to improve the partnership between KCD, its rural landowners, its urban jurisdictions, its other government and non-government stakeholders and the King County Council. I will continue to promote KCD and its services both on the ground and by the Internet so that KCD can strengthen all its partnerships and programs. I have the proven ability to achieve these goals and to expand the awareness of all of the KCD’s programs and grants for the benefit of all who live in King County. I sincerely thank you for your vote.

Eric Nelson, Duvall - I am a candidate for the King Conservation District Board of Supervisors. I currently am a partner in, and manage a dairy farm in Duvall. I am also a King County native and a three generation farmer. I have served on the King County Agriculture Commission as a representative of the dairy industry and was its first Chair. I am currently also serving as a Commissioner of Drainage District #6 and am serving on the King County Agricultural Drainage Assistance Program Advisory Committee.

I have had the opportunity to work with the King CD for many years, both as a user of their farm planning and cost-sharing assistance, and as a partner agency when I worked for King County as Livestock Program Manager and as the County’s Agriculture Program Manager. I have always found their programs to be very helpful and have seen the great job the district does in working with the county’s residents and jurisdictions with resource protection and conservation needs.

I feel my background as a farmer, a former agriculture commissioner, and as a former Agriculture Program Manager for King County, that I am uniquely qualified to serve as a member of the KCD’s Board of Supervisors. I understand the importance of resource conservation for all of our county’s residents, rural and urban alike, and will do my best to see that the conservation needs of all of our residents are met and would appreciate your vote in the upcoming election.

Preston Prudente, Sammamish - Like many people in King County, I care about and do my part to conserve our natural resources as an individual; however, serving on the Board of Supervisors will provide an opportunity for me to make a greater contribution toward safeguarding and improving our water, forests and farmlands.

I recently retired with 25 years experience as an Administrative/Operations Director with two professional service firms (Arthur Andersen LLP and Moss Adams LLP) and two prominent nonprofits (Global Partnerships and Rural Development Institute) after 10 years as a systems consultant with Andersen Consulting. I would value the opportunity to use my skills to contribute to the District's capacity building efforts -- i.e., to strengthen its infrastructure, improve its operational effectiveness and increase its capacity to assist local land managers and other stakeholders. I would consult/work with the KCD staff to streamline processes and explore opportunities to collaborate with other Conservation Districts to share and implement best practices.

I live in Sammamish with my wife of 35 years. We have 2 married children and 5 grandchildren. I was born and raised in Spokane, earned a BA degree in mathematics from Dartmouth College and a MBA degree from the University of Michigan and served as an officer in the US Navy.

Steve Neugebauer, Duvall - Mr. Neugebauer has chosen to withdraw from the election and therefore will not be included on the ballot.


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