Missouri Department of Conservation welcomes Margy Eckelkamp to Conservation Commission

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New commissioner brings experience in agriculture and communications and a passion for nature.

New commissioner brings experience in agriculture and communications and a passion for nature.

The Missouri Conservation Commission and the Missouri Department of Conservation welcome Margaret “Margy” F. Eckelkamp of Washington as the newest member of the four-person Conservation Commission.

The Franklin County resident was appointed by Missouri Gov. Mike Parson July 30 to serve a six-year term expiring June 30, 2027. The appointment is pending confirmation by the Missouri Senate.

Eckelkamp replaces Don Bedell of Sikeston, whose second six-year term as a Conservation Commissioner expired June 30. As a commissioner, Eckelkamp joins Commission Chair Barry Orscheln of Columbia, Commission Vice Chair Mark McHenry of Kansas City, and Commission Secretary Dr. Steven Harrison of Rolla.

“We’re elated with Governor Parson’s choice to appoint Margy to the Missouri Department of Conservation Commission,” said Commission Chair Barry Orscheln. “Her background in agriculture, and as a journalist, complements our mission to protect and manage the fish, forest, and wildlife of the state and to facilitate and provide opportunities for all citizens to use, enjoy, and learn about these resources. She will be a great asset for conservation, and we look forward to working with her.” 

Eckelkamp was born in Columbia before her family moved to South Carolina when she was a child. She returned to Missouri in 2002 and lives in Washington with her husband, William Jr., and their two children, William III, 6, and Lucille, 2.

Her family life in Missouri runs deep with her great-great grandparents, great-grandparents, grandparents, parents, and husband being from Washington, where her family’s farm is located. Eckelkamp enjoys hiking, wildlife watching, and fishing on the family pond. Her husband is an avid hunter and angler and takes every opportunity to introduce their children to the outdoors.

Eckelkamp is a 2006 graduate of the University of Missouri at Columbia where she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in agricultural journalism with a minor in agricultural economics.

Eckelkamp has a background in agricultural communications and is the editor of The Scoop for the Farm Journal. She also serves as a mentor and network member for AgLaunch, a technology accelerator, and for Missouri State University's Missouri Small Business Development Center. Eckelkamp is a volunteer soccer coach at the Four Rivers Family YMCA in Washington and a volunteer for Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church in Washington.

Eckelkamp was a member and past chair of the Griffiths Leadership Society for Women, has earned the Mid America Crop Life Association's Ruth White Media Award, and was selected as a Mizzou '39 recipient, which recognizes the top 39 MU students in their senior class. 

“I am very honored and humbled to be able to serve as a Conservation Commissioner,” Eckelkamp said. “I look forward to bringing my personal passion for conservation as well as my professional background in agriculture and communications to help the Commission and MDC in the work we do.”

She added, “The driving goal of conservation is to ensure the next generation has the same or better opportunities to enjoy the outdoors. As a mother of two young children, it is also personally important for me to make sure we conserve nature for future generations. Missouri is rich in opportunities for all citizens to be outside and appreciate the natural resources and wildlife the state has to offer.”

The Missouri Conservation Commission consists of four members appointed by the governor with the advice and consent of the Senate. Commissioners serve six-year terms with no salary or other compensation with not more than two allowed from the same political party.

Their responsibilities include appointing the Missouri Department of Conservation Director, serving as Missouri Department of Conservation policy makers, approving regulations of the Wildlife Code of Missouri, strategic planning, and budget development and major expenditure decisions. For more on the Commission, visit Missouri Department of Conservation online at mdc.mo.gov/about-us/conservation-commission.