2017 Conservation Expo

Thursday, September 21, 2017
9:00 am – 3:00 pm
Doors Open At 8:00 AM     


Bell County Expo! Center
301 W. Loop 121

 Belton, Tx. 76513


COST: $25.00/Person
3 CEUs Offered
Lunch will be provided






Wildlife Tax Valuation – Derrick Wolter, Texas Parks & Wildlife

Soil Health and Plant Identification – Nathan Haile, NRCS

and Matt Machacek, NRCS

Pond Management – Ricky Linex, NRCS

Bell County Groundwater – Dirk Aaron, Clearwater

Riparian Management – Kyle Wright, NRCS

Plan my Operation – Lori Hazel, Texas Forest Service


Derrick Wolter

Wildlife Biologist, Texas Parks and Wildlife, Central Texas

Derrick Wolter has worked for Texas Parks and Wildlife Department for 18 years as a wildlife biologist and has been stationed in Central Texas for the last 14 years. Derrick works with private landowners in Bell and adjacent counties to develop wildlife management plans to manage wildlife populations, improve native habitat and apply for the wildlife tax valuation. He earned a B.S. in Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences and a M.S in Wildlife Ecology from Texas A&M University.


Nathan Haile

Soil Health Specialist, NRCS, Temple, TX

Nathan’s 21 years with the Natural Resources Conservation Service has given him the opportunity to evaluate soils across the state of Texas and many unique regions of the nation. For the past 10 years he has focused his efforts in improving knowledge of soil quality in Texas. He graduated with a Plant and Soil Science degree from Tarleton State University and is currently the Soil Health Specialist for Texas NRCS. Nathan and his wife Angie have 2 daughters and enjoy running a small cow calf operation in Central Texas.


Matt Machacek

Grazingland Specialist, USDA/Natural Resources Conservation Service, Corsicana, TX

Matt Machacek represents the Blackland Prairie Grazing Land Coalition. Texas GLC is a partnership of organizations and individuals who foster stewardship of privately owned grazing lands in Texas. The primary partner of the Texas GLC is the Natural Resources Conservation Service who in turn provides trained specialist to work on privately owned grazing lands. Matt covers a 21 county region of the Blackland Prairie in North Texas, and he works with ranchers to develop grazing and resource management plans to improve ranching sustainability.

Matt graduated from Texas A&M University in 2006 with a B.S. in Rangeland Ecology and Management. His previous work locations include Colorado City, Junction, and Victoria Texas as a county Rangeland Management Specialist for NRCS.


Ricky Linex

Wildlife Biologist, NRCS, Weatherford, TX

Ricky Linex is a wildlife biologist for the Natural Resources Conservation Service headquartered in Weatherford, Texas.  He is a 1981 graduate from Texas Tech University with a Range Management degree with Wildlife Habitat option.  Linex works 51 counties in north central Texas covering the Rolling Plains, Cross Timbers, Blackland Prairie, and the Post Oak Savannah vegetational regions.  He has worked for 35 years with NRCS in Texas serving at Goldthwaite, Snyder, Abilene, and now Weatherford. His duties range from training field office employees in plant identification and habitat needs for wildlife, endangered species, pond and wetland management, balancing livestock and wildlife habitat needs, habitat management for deer, dove, turkey, and his favorite gamebird, the Bobwhite quail.


  Dirk Aaron

General Manager of Clearwater Underground Water Conservation District, Belton, TX

Dirk Aaron has been the General Manager of Clearwater Underground Water Conservation District since June of 2011. Prior to that he served as an Extension Agent for the Texas AgriLife Extension Service for more than 30 years.

Clearwater is a single county GCD serving the geographical region of Bell County. Dirk is charged by his elected Board of Directors to manage the District in accordance with the District’s Management Plan per Chapter 36, with an approach of fairness, efficiency and collaboration with all water user groups. He currently serves as the Vice Chairman of the Texas Alliance of Groundwater Districts and Chairs their Legislative Committee. Dirk was recently elected to the board of directors of the Texas Water Conservation Association.

Dirk received his Bachelors Degree from Texas A&M University – 1981 and received his Master of Science Degree in 1991 from Texas Tech University. He and his wife of 35 years, Cindy, have two sons; Colton 30 and Cameron 26 and proud to have two grandsons ages 7 and 4. Dirk and Cindy are members of Tapestry Community Church of Belton and both volunteer with local 4-H members.


Kyle Wright

State Water Quality Specialist, NRCS, Temple, TX

Kyle Wright is the State Water Quality Specialist on the Landscape Planning staff at the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Texas State Office in Temple, Texas. Kyle has a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree from Angelo State University. He has 20 years of experience in the private sector as well as 15 years of federal employment. Kyle has spent much of his life in West Texas and now resides In Salado.


Lori Hazel

Water Resources Program Forester, Texas A&M Forest Service, Temple, TX

Lori is a member of Texas A&M Forest Service Water Resources Program focusing on Central and West Texas.  She is a graduate of Purdue University’s School of Forestry with a dual major in forest management and forest recreation.  She has developed a diverse background in water management, stewardship management, fire management, and ecosystem restoration on both private and public lands through her work in both Texas and Florida.

Lori’s work has focused on restoring and maintaining resilient watersheds in both upland and wetland landscapes which includes a variety of forested ecosystem restoration projects, endangered species management, and prairie, marsh, and muck farm restorations.  A key component of the success has been through strategic fire management practices including re-introduction of fire in the fire dependent landscapes, fuels mitigation practices, and utilizing minimal impact suppression tactics during wildfire management operations.


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