Staci R. Clark
Come and join us at Montgomery Bell State Park near Nashville, Tennessee for this year's dynamic conference: "Everything Counts"!
While there, you'll have the opportunity to gain knowledge from a diverse range of programs, network with colleagues, and obtain valuable tools to enhance your existing program or develop a new one. Click here for Conference Agenda:http://www.anrosp.org/pdfs/DRAFT%20AGENDA-2015.pdf
Dr. David Haskell, nationally recognized Professor of Biology at the University of the South, and author of the award winning book: The Forest Unseen, will share some of the stories and scientific insights from his book.
The Forest Unseen chronicles the experiences of biologist David Haskell as he observes the same, one-square-meter patch of old growth forest in the mountains of Tennessee for one year.
Dr. Haskell's classes have received national attention for the innovative ways in which they combine scientific exploration, contemplative practice, and action in the community. In 2009, the Carnegie and CASE Foundations named him Professor of the Year for Tennessee, an award given to college professors who have achieved national distinction and whose work shows “extraordinary dedication to undergraduate teaching.” The Oxford American featured him in 2011 as one of the southern U.S.’s most creative teachers and his teaching has been profiled in USA Today, The Tennesseean, and other newspapers.
He holds degrees from the University of Oxford (B.A. in Zoology) and from Cornell University (Ph.D. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology). He is Professor of Biology at the University of the South, where he has served both as Chair of Biology and as an Environmental Fellow with the Associated Colleges of the South. He is a Fellow of the American Council of Learned Societies and was granted Elective Membership in the American Ornithologists’ Union in recognition of “significant contributions to ornithology.” He served on the board of the South Cumberland Regional Land Trust, where he initiated and led the campaign to purchase and protect a portion of Shakerag Hollow, where the book is set, a forest that E. O. Wilson has called a “cathedral of nature.”
Check out his blog "Ramble" at: https://davidhaskell.wordpress.com/
Off-site Field Trips
In addition to the fabulous presentations, classes and workshops offered at this year’s conference, two off-site field trips are being included at no additional cost.
Off-site field trips this year include Harpeth River State Park and Long Hunter State Park. At Harpeth River State Park we will visit Mound Bottom, a large Mississippian Period town and ceremonial site located on the Harpeth River in Cheatham County, Tennessee. The town is probably more than a thousand years old, estimated to have been populated between around 900 AD and 1300 AD based on radio carbon dating. The site contains 14 mounds surrounding a plaza area, including a large platform mound. This mound probably supported the house of the town leader and/or a town house or temple used for civic or religious purposes. Results of archaeological excavations conducted in 1926 indicate that all of the mounds around the plaza supported some type of buildings, possibly the homes of town officials. Most of the people lived in houses arranged in rows outside the mounds around the plaza. The town was enclosed on the north, east, and south sides by a wooden palisade. For additional information, visit the following website:www.nativehistoryassociation.org/moundbottom.php .
Also at the Harpeth River State Park we will visit the Narrows of the Harpeth. Located in the Narrows is a 100 yard tunnel, hand cut through solid rock in 1818 and was one of the great engineering feats of the time and is today an industrial landmark on the National Register of Historic Places. Montgomery Bell an early iron industrialist, was so proud of his steel mill that he lived within the sound of this waterfall and is buried across the river from the tunnel.
At Long Hunter State Park we will visit a cedar glade. A cedar glade is a habitat type unique to the central eastern U.S. where limestone bedrock occurs near or at the surface. Therefore there is very shallow soil or exposed bedrock which creates a unique environment. For additional information, check out www.mtsu.edu/mtsucee/cedar_glades.php, the Center for Cedar Glades Studies at Middle Tennessee State University.
Lodging is available at Montgomery Bell State Park Inn. The rates are $84 plus 14.75% tax per room per night, single or double occupancy. If you are paying with a government credit card, bring a tax exemption certificate from your state and save the state sales tax. The Inn has rooms on hold for us until August 3 so don’t delay. Call (615) 797-3101 to reserve your room. The group reservation is under the name ANROSP.
The conference fee of $150.00 includes coffee, Danish, juice, muffins, and hot tea on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings, lunch on Tuesday and Wednesday, a BBQ outing on Tuesday evening (complete with band) and an awards breakfast on Thursday morning. It also includes the field trips.
In addition to registering for the conference, the Alliance of Natural Resource Outreach and Service Programs Board of Directors has a number of opportunities to share with you.
Conference Scholarships- ANROSP has allocated funds to provide scholarships for this year’s annual conference. Our goal is to provide assistance to individuals who would not otherwise be able to attend the conference. Please see the attached scholarship application and return it to me by August 31, 2015 for consideration.
Request for Bids to Host the 2016 Annual Conference- We are requesting proposals from eligible programs to host the 2016 annual conference. Potential host sites are those that have an ANROSP member program in good standing, a commitment to providing local support for the year of the conference, will provide at least one person to serve on the conference committee and lead the local arrangements committee. Here is a list of previous years conferences: Arizona, Colorado, Minnesota, Texas, and West Virginia, Illinois, Utah, Pennsylvania, Mississippi and Nevada.
RFBs have been extended to August 31, 2015.
Financial Aid- The ANROSP Financial Aid (previously called the mini-grant) is intended to further support our programmatic member’s efforts in developing, building and expanding their state-wide programs. The dollars are flexible allowing for a variety of proposals from education and outreach to capacity building to natural resource management. This is one of the many benefits of being an ANROSP member. The attached financial aid application is due by August 18, 2015. This year’s recipients will be announced at the annual conference but is an ongoing award open to membership.
Call for Presentations- The due date for proposals to present at this year’s conference is July 31, 2015.Presentations on Environmental Education, Interpretation, and an array of topics related to program management are being considered. Please refer to the attached Call for Presentations for more information. This year’s theme is “Everything Counts!” This could include everything from counting impacts of volunteers, citizen science based inventories, or interpretive evaluation.
Apply Now for 2015 ANROSP Program Awards!
The ANROSP awards committee encourages you to apply for an ANROSP award for your program, educational materials, volunteer project, program evaluation or outstanding teamwork. All of our member programs are outstanding and it is time to be nationally recognized for your efforts. We encourage you to nominate yourself, your program, group or volunteers for these awards. Who understands your work better than you? This is a great addition to your CV or resume. Awards applications are due to Vice President, Amanda Tedrow by August 18, 2015. For additional information and/or to apply contact Amanda at email@example.com
Here are the five ANROSP award application links:
Outstanding Educational Materials: http://anrosp.org/pdfs/ANROSP%20Outstanding%20Support%20Materials%20Application.pdf[anrosp.org]
Outstanding Volunteer Project:http://anrosp.org/pdfs/ANROSP%20Outstanding%20Volunteer%20Project%20Application.pdf[anrosp.org]
Outstanding Program Evaluation: http://anrosp.org/pdfs/ANROSP%20Outstanding%20Program%20Evaluation%20Application.pdf[anrosp.org]
ANROSP is currently seeking nominations for the annual election to be held in Tennessee. Consider serving on the board or as an officer. Nominate yourself or someone you know. Our Board Member at Large, Mark Larese-Casanova will soon be sending you a nomination request.
ANROSP operates entirely on volunteer service. There are no paid staff to help with important tasks like maintaining the membership database, organizing the annual conference, or writing newsletters. Each year, we aim to build the membership of ANROSP’s committees to accomplish the mission of the organization. Would you like to help us by volunteering for one or more of these committees in 2016?
The Finance Committee is responsible for developing and reviewing fiscal procedures, a fundraising plan, and an annual budget with staff and other Board members. If you are great with numbers and managing project budgets, this is a great committee to serve on!
The Elections Committee is responsible for seeking out new Board candidates and maintaining a geographic diversity as well as balance of representation of member programs. If you would like to get to know ANROSP’s members and help find leaders for the organization, please join us.
The Conference Committee is responsible for planning all aspects of the annual conference. This is a great chance to help plan the one big event that brings us together in a beautiful part of the country each year.
Communications & Marketing Committee
This committee is responsible for maintaining the ANROSP web site, newsletter, and other communications and marketing needs. It’s easy, but very important behind the scenes work.
This committee manages ANROSP’s membership, approval of programmatic membership applications, dues, and renewal notices. Help us continue to bring new members and perspectives to ANROSP from exciting outreach programs from across the country.
Program Resources Committee
This committee is responsible for finding and sharing opportunities for programs, professional development, or training; curriculum development and review; service initiatives; program start-up packages; and training workshops for mentoring teams. We also manage the monthly Mentor Conference Calls and Annual Awards.
Strategic Planning Committee
This committee identifies critical issues facing ANROSP and helps develop a strategic vision, and the goals and objectives needed to carry out that vision. If you like thinking ‘big picture’, this is the committee for you.
Silent Auction Donation
Also, just a friendly reminder: in addition, at this time we are seeking donations of goods for the annual silent auction. All proceeds will go towards future ANROSP activities and scholarships. if you will be bringing any items or if you are not attending and would like to send items to be auctioned. Items in the past have included logo t-shirts and clothing, field guides, and site specific goods. Coffee, honey, lotions, handmade items are also nice. The silent auction will also occur at our annual conference. Please notify Board Member at Large, Mark Larese-Casanova firstname.lastname@example.org if you will be bringing any items or if you are not attending and would like to send items to be auctioned.
Texas Master Naturalist Program
Since 1997, the Texas Master Naturalist™ (TMN) Program has grown to include 45 chapters and more than 9,600 volunteers serving Texas communities throughout 80 percent of the state’s counties. The mission of the program is “to develop a corps of well-informed volunteers to provide education, outreach, and service dedicated to the beneficial management of natural resources and natural areas within their communities for the state of Texas.”
What makes the work of a Texas Master Naturalist so important is that they are not only individuals who love nature and offer their time, but are also trained naturalists with specialized knowledge of different ecosystems, species, habitats, and environmental demands that is priceless when determining how to best manage natural resources. These skilled volunteers work with communities and organizations across the state to implement youth outreach programs; help operate parks, nature centers, and natural areas; and lead local natural resource conservation efforts. In addition, private landowners depend on the expertise of these volunteers to help them gain a broader scientific understanding of the ecology and management of their natural resources.
An individual gains the designation of Texas Master Naturalist after participating in an approved chapter training program with a minimum of 40 hours of combined field and classroom instruction, obtaining 8 hours of approved advanced training, and completing 40 hours of approved volunteer service. Following the initial training program, trainees have one year in which to complete their 40 hours of volunteer service and 8 hours of advanced training. To retain the Texas Master Naturalist title during each subsequent year, volunteers must complete 8 additional hours of advanced training and provide an additional 40 hours of volunteer service coordinated through their local chapter. Though that seems like a lot for a volunteer program, so many volunteers do even more; 52 volunteers have given over 5,000 service hours, and 9 volunteers have given over 10,000 service hours!
The program currently has trained 9,676 Texas Master Naturalist volunteers in 45 local chapters across the state. Whether it’s designing nature trails, conserving habitat, setting up birding stations, or planting wildflowers, TMN volunteers are creating a better environment for their fellow Texans. Since its establishment in 1997, TMN volunteer efforts have provided over 2,833,064 hours of service valued at more than $65.2 million. This service has resulted in developing and maintaining more than 1,946 miles of trail; enhancing 218,762 plus acres of wildlife and native plant habitats; reaching more than 2 million youth, adults and private landowners. One member even discovered a new plant species.
Funding for the Texas Master Naturalist Program is provided by Texas Parks & Wildlife Department and Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service. In Texas, this partnership among the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, and some 398 local partners has resulted in a unique master volunteer organization. At the state level, the organization is directed by a statewide program coordinator and assistant statewide coordinator. The Program also receives direction from an advisory committee providing training guidelines, program marketing and promotion, curriculum resources, and advanced training opportunities; along with a volunteer representatives committee responsible for representing the varied interests of the chapters and providing a communication link to state committees and program leaders.
In 2014, the Texas Master Naturalist Program was awarded two highly accomplished awards, the Governor’s Volunteer Award in the Community Leadership category and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality’s Environmental Excellence Award in the Civic/Community category.
Growing Into the Next Level
To grow beyond the level of success that the Texas Master Naturalist Program has already achieved over the years is an ambitious goal and one that the program has begun to initiate. These growths include the growth of new chapters, growth in the curriculum being taught around the state of Texas, growth of the program’s structure through further developed protocols and bylaws and growth through a new online volunteer management system.
As the current 45 chapters cover 194 counties out of the 254 counties in the state of Texas, the growth of new chapters in new regions is limited. The counties without chapters across the state are those typically that have relatively low populations per acre or do not have major metro areas within a cohesive distance to make volunteer gathering easy. The growth of new chapters in new regions has slowed, but the growth of new chapters within currently existing chapters is one that has begun. There have been two chapters within the last year that have developed from one chapter splitting their territory. This growth has allowed for expanded volunteer participation, diversity of audiences and more dynamic volunteer groups. One of these new internal growth chapters developed in partnership with a local university and includes a targeted college student population, an audience and concept that is new to the ranks of the Texas Master Naturalist Program.
The other three growths that have rounded out the Texas Master Naturalist Program’s stellar 16 years of service in the state has been the update and release of three guiding development, organizational and educational resources. With these resources in use and in the hands of the 9,000+ trained Texas Master Naturalists, the program will only continue to grow.
NEXT MONTHLY ANROSP MENTOR CONFERENCE CALL - Thursday, August 13, 2015
We invite you to join the next regular Alliance of Natural Resource Outreach and Service Programs (ANROSP) Mentor Conference CallThursday, August 13, 2015 at 12:00 noon Central time (1:00 pm Eastern Time, 11:00 Mountain, 10:00 Pacific) Joining us as Facilitator for the August call will be Alycia Crall, Virginia Master Naturalist Program Coordinator; and co-host will be Denise Parsons, Nevada Naturalist Program Coordinator.
Please join us on this call to share your experience, ask questions, learn from colleagues, and network with similar programs. All members are welcome to participate, regardless of whether you are a newly developing program or an experienced program! The format is very open.
Call topics will include anything that participants want to ask, discuss or share. ANROSP has worked to ensure that there will be ANROSP board members representing member programs on every call, and those individuals will rotate so that each call has representatives with different interests and expertise.
Please do not forward this opportunity to non-members as mentor conference calls are a benefit of ANROSP membership and are only open to ANROSP members. To join the fun, call 712-432-0927, access code 919711#. Your regular long distance fees apply.
We hope to talk with everyone on our August call!
For more information contact: Michelle Haggerty at MHaggerty@ag.tamu.edu
NOTE: There will not be a Mentor Conference Call in September due to the National ANROSP Conference being held September 14-17, 2015 in Tennessee.
Highlights of recent Mentor Conference Calls
Looking forward to seeing everyone in Tennessee!
ANROSP Secretary & Communication Committee Chair