Annual Meeting Wrap Up
Hello Wildlifers, and Happy Spring!
We hope you enjoyed the February 2016 50th Anniversary Annual Meeting in Seaside, Oregon. ORTWS has been “marking our territory” in this state for 50 years, and looks forward to 50 more. Thanks to all 242 of you that attended and helped make it a great success!
The Program with Abstracts is now available for download here.
Here is the play-by-play!
We kicked off Wednesday morning with several associated meetings organized by various agency work groups. With deference and respect, the Past President’s luncheon was brought back by popular demand, and at least 25 past presidents joined us. Additional presidents may have sneaked in without announcing their esteemed history. We also honored ORTWS history with a panel discussion from our past presidents during the Plenary session. We hope you all enjoyed hearing some of the history, memories and evolution of our chapter.
The sessions began on Wednesday afternoon with a new format of “Reports from the Field”. This format encouraged presentations that included not only research, but reports from the field, effective collaborations, lessons learned, field briefings, field skills and techniques as well. We capped all presentations to 20 minutes (previous years were 30 minutes). This new format helped our chapter recruit a wider array of topics of expertise and hopefully promoted a better venue for the sharing of professional skills.
We held our ever popular Student Mentor session to bring students, young professionals, and experienced wildlifers together, and followed it up with the traditional Welcome Reception. This year our DJ came with a photo booth, and from the flashes it seemed popular. We hope everyone enjoyed and utilized this fun new feature. The sessions continued all day Thursday and we had some really great topics covered. Special thanks to The NW Section who sponsored an entire afternoon symposium, “Managing one Species to Benefit Another: Science, Ethics, and Policy”.
The Business Meeting sported the results of our elections with a new board taking hold of the gavel! Financials were discussed, and you can see assorted Treasurer reports here. The awards banquet featured a PowerPoint presentation of trivia that took a lot of effort by our President-elect Heather Bernier (and some others); judging from the feedback so far that effort was worth it! Our fundraising efforts through the silent auction and raffle raised nearly $1900 that will go towards our grants program, and thanks to the foresight of boards of years past, our investment returns enabled ORTWS able to award four scholarships! We were also honored to present all four of our special recognition awards and the two speaker awards.
On Friday we had several options for attendees which included a fantastic workshop: Communicating Environmental Topics and two field trips: Ecola Beach Clean-up and Salamander Scavenger Hunt – more on these events to come.
This meeting would not have been possible without the volunteer efforts of many individuals. Thank you to everyone who made this meeting a success!!!
– Autumn Larkins (VP) and Vanessa Blackstone (Treasurer)