Local youth wins statewide conservation-themed poster contest

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO Toledo resident Lillia Benner’s poster was one of five statewide winners in the 2023 Conservation Districts of Iowa Poster Contest and is heading for national competition.

Officials with the Tama Soil & Water Conservation District announce Lillia Benner, of Toledo, for being selected one of five statewide winners in the 2023 Conservation Districts of Iowa Poster Contest. Her entry will move on to the national competition, with the results to be announced at the National Association of Conservation Districts Annual Meeting in mid-February 2024.

Benner, a student at South Tama County Elementary in Tama, had her artwork selected from local entries submitted to Tama SWCD last spring, gleaning her a $20 local prize. As the local winner, her poster moved on for 2nd-3rd grade competition in CDI’s Region 7, which includes 12 Iowa counties. After her poster was selected as the 2nd-3rd grade winner at the regional level, it was forwarded with other regional category winners to the recent 2023 CDI Annual Conference held in Ames. There Benner’s artwork was selected from Iowa’s nine regional 2nd-3rd grade category winners for the state prize. Her regional and state awards were announced at Tama SWCD’s Annual Conservation Awards Banquet on Nov. 15, where she received her $35 Regional Winner and $50 State Winner prizes.

The 2023 contest theme is “One Water.”

The poster contest is open to public, private and home-schooled students. To learn more, log on to the Conservation Districts of Iowa webpage: https://www.cdiowa.org/get-involved/poster-contest where you can also view CDI’s 2023 category poster winners, including Benner’s.