A Jackson County native, Marilyn is just completing a four-year term with the board. She attended Central Point Schools and was an active 4-H club member. In 1956, she graduated from Oregon State University with a degree in Animal Science. When her military husband went overseas, Marilyn enrolled at “Southern” (now Southern Oregon University). This led to thirty years of teaching elementary school in Medford, Virginia, and Washington State.
Since retiring she has participated with Citizen Involvement Groups focusing on the valley’s growth; clean water, conservation, and open space. These experiences were valuable preparation for joining the Board. Groups included: Agate Desert Vernal Pools Projects; Jackson Creek Watershed; Rogue Valley Council of Governments’ Bear Creek Valley Regional Problem solving Project; and the Nature Conservancy Native Seed Garden when it was located at OSU’s Southern Oregon Experiment Station.
Marilyn has been impressed with the approach that SWCD takes in solving conservation problems–plans become projects. There was technical assistance to rural and urban landowners, as well as, county and city governments. Federal, State, and private entities joined in sharing information and assets and education plays a key role. Most impressive were voluntary common sense solutions that turned “… resource concerns into management opportunities.” (Taken from SWCD Motto).
As an elected SWCD volunteer, Marilyn Rice continues to be excited about new opportunities to learn, support agriculture, and promote stewardship of Jackson County lands.