January Board Minutes

­North Cascades Audubon SocietyBoard of Directors Meeting and Retreat Agenda1011 Girard St.January 8, 2018                                                                                                                              5:00 PM 

  1. Additions to Agenda – added as needed.
  2. Approval of December Minutes- Approved by board with no amendments.
  3. Treasurer’s Report – Sue went over the report for December and explained expenses and revenue items of interest. She noted that our expenses for the year were quite a bit more than our revenue, but that we have adequate reserves to cover the gap between expenditures and revenue. We will need to address this issue in the future if this trend continues. Sue will provide a short article on how money was spent in 2017 and there is a pie chart that will accompany the article that illustrates the different areas of expenditures and revenue sources.

Prioritize infrastructure for 2018NCAS Ongoing Programs and Events (including who is responsible for each)

  • Membership Programs and Presentations – Steven Harper – The current mix of 9 programs is good. There was a discussion of changing the format of the meeting to encourage more engagement (social interaction) and a more welcoming environment for new members. One possibility is starting at 6:45 pm and not starting the actual program until 7:15 pm. This will be investigated in the near future.
  • Annual Campout – Steven Harper – The site has been reserved again for this spring and we will continue with a similar format as in past years.
  • Backyard Habitat and Native Flora Fair – Pam Borso– We will continue doing this event.
  • CBC – Doug Brown – We will investigate holding the potluck at the YWCA or the Community Food Coop Community Room. We will not be using the Squalicum Yacht Club in the future. We need to figure out how to generate more interest in the potluck.
  • Cherry Point Bird Surveys – Lyle Anderson – We will continue to be an active partner.
  • Farmer's Market Tabling – Although everyone believes that there is value, we did not make a decision on whether to continue the event. No one stepped forward to coordinate all the logistics and we do not know if we have the volunteer capacity to staff a monthly booth.  We will continue to discuss this opportunity at the February Board Meeting.
  • Field Trips – Ken Salzman – Continue with field trips as in the past.
  • Holiday Potluck – Hospitality Committee - Dec. 10 at YWCA is proposed for 2018. Pam will check this out and make the reservation if it is available.
  • Hospitality Chair/Alternate – We need a new hospitality chair and alternate for our events. Pam will actively attempt to recruit these persons.
  • Membership – Owen Bamford – The board decided that we need to increase memberships (engagement) as well as encourage people to give more money as donations to cover NCAS expenses. A membership committee will be formed to explore different ways that we will accomplish this.
  • Museum Presence: We agreed to continue to have Audubon members present on the 4th Sunday of each month in the Edson Bird Gallery. The next scheduled Sundays are January 28, February 25, March 25, April 22, and May 27. Steven Harper has volunteered for January 28.
  • Nest Box Construction and Dispersal – Ken Salzman– Will continue to build boxes as needed and currently has plenty of wood procured.
  • Newsletters - Kelley Palmer McGee – Newsletter deadline continues to be the 15th of the month before publication. November and December are a combined newsletter and no newsletters are published for June – August. The next newsletter will include the articles on the swan’s installation in the Whatcom Museum exhibit and the availability of scholarships for the WCC Community Education class “Birding in the Pacific Northwest”.
  • Plants and Birds Presentations – Pam Borso and Chris Brewer– The National Audubon Plants and Birds program has been adapted to fit Northwest birds and plants. There are also pamphlets and a laminated resource guide being developed for tabling and for use at local nurseries. This is being co-sponsored by the Native Plant Society. Pam and Chris have scheduled a number of events using the presentation.  Pam has submitted a grant application to National Audubon to help fund the costs for this project.
  • PR/Marketing -Jamie Huson(temporary) until we find a new person. Pam is working on finding a new person to take over this function. Jamie will continue to be responsible for Facebook and social media postings as well.
  • Scholarships – Nicole Huson – She has a meeting with Don Burgess in the next couple of weeks to coordinate publicity for the research scholarships at WWU.
  • Membership Software, Google Docs, Website– Jamie Huson – He is working on the new web page which should be ready for switch over in about 2 months. He gave a brief demonstration of the new website which is supported by Square Space.  The board was impressed and we will move ahead with conversion from our present format.  The new website will also support a payment link.  Jamie is also continuing to work on possibilities for membership software and getting people set up for Google Docs.
  • Whatcom Land Trust Surveys – Steven Harper– WLT, along with NCAS, will explore submitting a grant proposal to Cornell Bird Lab for money to provide support for the bird surveys and habitat restoration and management. The board agreed to provide some matching funding for a proposal. Steven will bring this back to the board in February for discussion. We will also continue to conduct field trips on WLT lands.
  • Wings Over Water Festival– Paul Woodcock– NCAS is participating again but there is no update until Paul returns from his overseas travels.

 Board Building & Governance: Jamie and Nicole – We need to get new officers as Pam and Paul cannot be President and Vice-President (according to by-laws). Nicole will send out the descriptions of all of the officers and other committee chair positions to all of the board members for their information and consideration. Huxley Environmental Career and Internship Fair: scheduled for Thursday, Feb.8; 4:30 – 6:30 PM. We will possibly have representation at the Fair or consider having an internship later.  This needs to be discussed and decided upon by the next meeting.Storing Education/Outreach Material:  for consideration at later meetings.Education Committee 2018 Plan: Chris Brewer provided a summary of the goals for 2018 listed below. 

  • Expand Outreach to Whatcom County

--Whatcom County Library programs--Birds & Brews--Additional field trip locations if possible

  • Develop Conservation Education

--Native Plants and Birds Program/Plants for Birds grants--Endangered species focus in conjunction with Whatcom Museum exhibit

  • Explore Youth Birding Possibilities and Continue Family Programs

--Sponsorship of state Youth Field Trip in Whatcom County (WOW) – 2019 WOW                                    --Continue developing collaboration with Wild Whatcom with Family Programs                                                      and offer family walks/programs as time permits                                    --Consider additional collaborative programs for children/families

  • Develop Bald Eagle Interpretive Programming

  Recruiting  and Incentivizing Volunteers:  Nicole Huson provided a summary of the Volunteer Interest Questionnaire. She had 35 responses and approx. 20 people that indicated an interest in volunteering with NCAS.  The board agreed that we need to understand exactly how we will be using the additional volunteers and then assign volunteers based on their interests indicated in the questionnaire results. Until then, board members will contact individuals and find out more specifically their interests in helping out NCAS.  Nicole will collect the information and people should send her all of the results of the inquiries. Jamie Huson presented a proposal (outlined below) for incentivizing volunteers and for creating a Google doc, tracking hours and areas of interest.Incentives Proposal                  --Volunteer recognition at Holiday Potluck through brief acknowledgement                  --Summer picnic for volunteers                  --Gift Incentives based on hours of volunteering                                    2 hours                      Audubon patch                                    7 hours                      Wild Bird Chalet $10 gift certificate                                    15 hours                   Audubon nest box                                    25 hours                   Signed book                  --Create a Google doc of volunteer interests (from Outreach Survey and other sources)                                    including volunteer tracking.  Budget:  Sue presented a draft 2018 budget based on anticipated NCAS activities and programs for 2018 and related expenses and revenue.  The board reviewed the budget and some changes were made.  Expenses will exceed revenue again in 2018.  The board discussed that although there are very adequate reserves at this time, in the future a balanced budget will be necessary.  Also, it is likely the actual expenses for 2018 will be less than projected.  Projected revenue for 2018 is $11,295 and projected expenses are $19,885. Upcoming Programs & EventsJanuary 11 :            Whatcom Museum- Audubon Presentation for Museum Advocates groupJanuary 23:             James Walker: Dragonflies and DamselfliesFebruary 27:           Dick McNeely: Birding Adventures with VideosMarch 27:                Pam Borso and Rae Edwards: Plants and BirdsApril 24:                    Dan Streiffert: Arctic National Wildlife Refuge        Next Meeting: February 5, 2018; 7 PM at Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship- 1207 Ellsworth St., Bellingham, WA 98225.  Someone will lead meeting unless Paul is present. Steven will contact the person from BUF to find out which meeting room we will be using. Adjourn