Louis E. Deerr
R. E. "Dick" Chiles
W Elmo Baumann
Mr. and Mrs. Dick Kouplen
Louis E. Aull
John Hebert, Jr.
George Sharpe, Jr.
Edward J. Williamson
Glen Archer (posthumously)
Bobby G. Bourlier
and Soil Scientists
P. J. Workman
Lori Evans Wilson
Nick grew up on a farm southeast of Geary,
Oklahoma, and is still an active farmer. He was on the Geary FFA Land
Judging team and received the FFA State Farmer Degree in 1986. He was
a high school basketball player and went on to play college ball in
Congratulations to Nick Owen,
the 2014 National Land & Range Judging Contest Honoree!
For 17 years Nick Owen has played an
important part in the site selectionand layout of the National Land
and Range Judging Contest. From arranging for the digging of
the pits, loting a site to feed 1,000 participants, or parking
vehicles and returning the site to the way it was found, Nick can be
counted on to get the job done.
Nick and his wife Christi live in El Reno with
children Ky, Reagan, Kale and Kole. They are members of Sacred Heart
Catholic Church where he has played Santa Claus for the past 19 years and
counting. Nick has been very active in Little League sports where he
has coached basketball, football, baseball and softball and is currently the
high school basktball Booster Club President.
Nick joined the USDA
Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) in 1997 as a soil onservation
technician in the El Reno Field Office. He has received numerous
achievement awards in his 17 years with the USDA, but one of the most
outstanding was the "National Unsung Hero Award" in 2003 for his exceptional
leadership in conservation and his community. He proudly represented
NRCS when he accepted the award in Washington, D.C., from the U.S. Secretary
Don Bartolina, contest coordinator, says, "We
appreciate all Nick does to make this contest run smoothly, especially
carrying the 'Big Stick' during the parking of all the vehicles. He is
a guy you can count on and is very deserving of this award."
Harry L. Fritzler, the 2012 National Land & Range Judging Contest
Harry L. Fritzler is the
state grazinglands specialist for southern Oklahoma for the USDA Natural
Resources Conservation Service. He was born and raised on a
farming and ranching operation in northwest Oklahoma. After
completing high school at Fargo, he attended college at Oklahoma State
University in Stillwater and graduated with a degree in Agronomy with a
Range Mangement Option.
|Harry began his career with NRCS in 1980. He worked as a range
conservationist at Kingfisher, Pawnee, Waurika, Pawhuska, Stillwater,
and El Reno from 1980 to 1993. He then served as a multi-county
range conservationist at Purcell and acting area agronomist for the
Duncan Area Office from 1993 to 1994. In 1994 he was selected as
an area resource specialist in the Pauls Valley Technical Service
Office, covering 14 counties. Harry served in that position until
2001 when he was named to his current position.
with the National Land & Range Judging Contest began during the early
1980's. He joined the ranks of contest workers as co-chair of the
Range Judging Steering Committee in 2004, and is the lead NRCS
coordinator for the Range Judging Contest. He has also conducted
numerous training schools over the years for coaches and leaders.
Harry also coordinates the presentation of the awards jackets for the
high point teams, individuals, and coaches sponsored by the Society for
Range Management at the contest Awards Banquet each year.
Harry is a member of the Society for Range Management and the Soil
and Water Conservation Society. He received the Society for Range
Management's NRCS Range Conservationist of the Year Award in 2001 and
the Oklahoma Section of the Society for Range Management's Trail Boss
Award in 2004.
Harry's wife Beverly graduated from OSU and she is the owner of Rose
Rock Veterinary Hospital & Pet Resort in Norman. Harry and Beverly
have two children, Bryce and Breawna. Bryce is currently in his
first year of Veterinary School at OSU, and Breawna is the Office
Manager at Rose Rock Veterinary Hospital & Pet Resort.
"Harry is the 'quiet guy' who gets things done." said Don Bartolina,
contest coordinator. "We can really depend on him and appreciate
all he does for the contest."
|Our 2011 Honoree.....
Congratulations to Dianne Ireton, the 2011 National Land & Range
Judging Contest Honoree!
Dianne is the systems coordinator for
the Oklahoma Conservation Commission's Abandoned Mine Reclamation
Program. Soon after joining OCC in the fall of 1986, she started
helping at the very next National Land & Range Judging Contest in May
1987, as one of approximately 200 tabulators hand grading contest score
In the 60 years of the contest, the times have changed in many ways.
Especially in the 25 years of Dianne's personal experience with the
contest, those changes have come at an increasingly rapid pace as the
world entered first the age of computers, then the World Wide Web, then
cellular and now 'smart' phones. Tabulation and results have gone
from handwritten to typewriters to computers, and today almost every
student carries a cell phone, some of which are capable of containing
applications that could provide an unfair advantage during the contest.
As Dianne's involvement with the contest has grown, she has gained
more responsibility and has helped with modernizing several aspects of
the contest as times have changed. In 1999 she took over
coordinating adult contest tabulation and compiling results from the
entire contest and formatting them for the awards to be presented at the
Awards Banquet. In 2005 she streamlined and modernized contest
registration by moving to the registration site the location for making
corrections and entering new registrations with the use of portable
computers and printers. Previously, corrections and new
registration information were taken back to the office where they were
prepared and then carried back to the contest registration site.
This modernization has speeded up the registration process and greatly
improved its efficiency. More recently Dianne played a role in
addressing rules about the use of electronic devices by participants
during the contest.
Dianne also modernized contest processes by developing a system in
which name tags, contest certificates and registration packets could all
be produced from one database instead of separate databases for each
category of product.
In addition, Dianne creates all the signs for the contest including
sponsorship signs, group leader signs, field signs and parking signs.
Dianne said that time preparing for and during the National Land &
Range Judging Contest is one of the busiest and most stressful times of
her year. But she speaks for all the annually-returning volunteers
when she says, "If we didn't enjoy it and believe we are doing something
good for the young people of America we wouldn't keep coming back."
Dianne and her husband Roy live in Choctaw and have two grown sons.