2023 DC Master Gardener™ of the Year

Our Master Gardener of the Year comes to us with a full and accomplished life. She is currently serving on the Douglas County Veterans Advisory Committee (VAC) and has been a Foster Parent to 8 local children, along with four children of her own.

Dawnetta had a decorated 24-year military career with the US Army, rising to the rank of Chief Warrant Officer Four (CW4), and has been awarded the Legion of Merit, two Bronze Star Medals and the Combat Action Badge, and deployed on three separate combat tours to Iraq.

During all of the previous achievements, she earned two college degrees: one in Restaurant & Culinary Management and the other in Computer Science.

Settled for the last 9-years of life here in Douglas County, developing a garden, orchard, vineyard, and chicken farmstead, she joined the 2019 Winter Class.

Even as a new student she volunteered her home that year, to study for the final and serve pizza with a small group of fellow students and their mentors. She finished 2019 with 68 volunteer hours. She served as a mentor for the 2022 Fall Class, and had logged in over 500 volunteer hours by the end of 2022.

In 2021 Dawnetta hosted our 2021 and 2022 summer meetings at her home, providing us with delicious wood- fired homemade pizza from her oven.

Dawnetta became our Treasurer in 2021, and handles the job professionally and with ease.

“Given to hospitality” is one of the gifts given described in the Bible, and Dawnetta has this gift. Last year at our 2022 Awards Social she came to serve, brought her husband, Dan, and daughter, Neysa, and all 3 worked the refreshments. Neysa gets a secondary award as well for all the help she’s given us at events.

Dawnetta was also instrumental in changing our Winter classes to Fall. She came with the Board to meet with the head of our state organization to successfully convince Gail to support us in our Fall class efforts.