MDC names new conservation educator in southwest Missouri

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Stacia Skinner hopes her love of the outdoors and her interest in working with teachers and students will result in showing how conservation can provide innovative teaching ideas.

On March 16, Skinner will begin her duties as a Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) Conservation Educator in MDC’s Southwest Region. She will work with elementary, middle school, and high school educators in Cedar, Dade, Dallas, Hickory, Laclede, and Polk counties.

“Working for the Missouri Department of Conservation is a dream come true, said Skinner, a Republic native and a graduate of Southwest Baptist University in Bolivar. “Learning from and working alongside MDC staff has only fueled my passion for the outdoors. I love getting people out into the fresh air and experiencing open spaces.”

Skinner may be new to her current duties, but she’s not new to MDC nor to the education field. Prior to accepting her current position, Skinner was an hourly at MDC’s Andy Dalton Shooting Range and Outdoor Education Center from 2022 until the present. Prior to that, she worked as a volunteer with MDC and the Missouri Prairie Foundation on a variety of habitat restoration projects.

Her experience in the classroom includes working with special needs students for three years (first as a paraprofessional, then as a teacher) in the Republic R-lll School District and then in Springfield (Mo.) Public Schools District.

Skinner will provide opportunities for teachers to work with MDC’s Discover Nature Schools (DNS) program. DNS is a statewide conservation-based education program that incorporates outdoors learning into a variety of school subjects. DNS emphasizes hands-on learning, teaches problem-solving and provides teachers with innovative outdoors-based options to add variety to their curriculums. Information about the DNS program can be found at:

Besides working with teachers on DNS curriculums, Skinner will also coordinate hunter education classes and certification for her six counties. She will also promote the Missouri National Archery in the Schools Program (MoNASP) and Discover Nature Fishing programs to schools in her counties.

She will work out of MDC’s Bolivar Office. He can be reached at 417-326-5189, ext. 1850 or at More information about MDC’s educational programs at be found at