Margaret J. “Peg” Reese
2008 Recipient of the Golden Auger Award
Peg started with the Soil Conservation Service in 1974 as a soil scientist, working on the Soil Survey of Marion and Monongalia Counties, WV, with party leader Dale Childs. She became a Charter member of the West Virginia Association of Professional Soil Scientists in 1982. Peg helped put together the brochures for the WV State Soil when it was passed by the legislature in 1997. As a major contributor, Peg also challenged the membership to match her donation grant, which they did, in order to bring our total donations for the Smithsonian Soils Exhibit to over $12,000.00.
Peg represented NRCS on the WV Conservation Education Council, and helped write the Soils and Geology portion of Samara test, which is an environmental honors program for 7th graders. She has worked on the Farmland and Ranch Land Protection Program helping protect WV farms from urban encroachment. She had a major role in creating the West Virginia Non-point Source Program for Agriculture and Construction.
Peg is a lifetime member of SWCS, and received the Fellow Award, the second highest honor of the society, in July of 2008. The Fellow Award recognizes professional excellence beyond state boundaries. Recently, through SWCS, Peg created the WVU Soil Judging Team Endowment Fund. This Fund will provide continuous revenue to help pay for travel and other support to the WVU Soil Judging Team. The initial goal has been reached, and funds are now available for distribution. The team can access 75% of the interest every year, with the remaining 25% going back into the principal. The principal can never be touched, so the fund will always continue to grow.
Peg taught soil and water conservation at the 1985 national Boy Scout of America Jamboree, West Virginia Conservation Camp, West Virginia Junior Conservation Camp, and Expand Your Horizons Workshops. She is a Certified Professional Erosion and Sediment Control Specialist and has served as the CPESC representative for West Virginia since 1999. She created a 501(c3) for the WV Soil and Water Conservation Awards in 1990 and served as the Secretary for WV Agricultural Hall of Fame for two years.
Peg holds a lifelong commitment to soil conservation, and has shown unwavering support of the West Virginia soils program. Her dedication to this cause is demonstrated, not just with the quality her professional work, but with her personal donations of time and money. She has made lasting impacts that will benefit the people of West Virginia, and their environment, for many years to come.