Help us fill out our committees
by John Shenot
his will probably come as a shock to most of you, but I’ve learned that a few of our members have never read the FCAS constitution and by-laws. (I know—shocking, right?) If they had read them, they would know that our chapter has nine standing committees: Conservation, Membership, Education, Finance, Program, Field Trip, Publications, Public Relations, and Hospitality. For as long as I’ve been on the FCAS Board (about four years), we’ve had chairpersons for most of these committees, but few or no actual committee members. I’m hoping we can change that in the months and years ahead.
Many of you have expressed an interest in volunteering your time to support FCAS. We occasionally tap volunteers for specific needs that arise, but I don’t think we’ve made the most of your willingness to contribute. I want to use this month’s President’s Corner to invite people to sit on one of our standing committees. It won’t require a lot of effort, or time, but it will give you a say in what the chapter does and what we have to offer our members. Want to organize a couple of outings each year? Join the Field Trip committee! Want to help with fundraising? Join the Finance committee! Know of some fascinating local researchers or naturalists who give great presentations? Join the Program committee! You get the idea. We would greatly appreciate this kind of help and hope you will consider joining a committee in 2017. If interested, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Find FCAS on Facebook for Field Trip Information
FCAS has a Facebook page where we post announcements about upcoming field trips, last minute changes to scheduled trips, and high-lights of most of our outings. Just click on the “Like" button in the plugin to Like our page! Our announcements should then appear on your wall. You can also click on "Fort Collins Audubon Society" to be taken directly to the Facebook page. Note: All field trips are also announced in the Ptarmigan and on our website.
Scholarships and Education
by Bill Miller
Dr. Alex Cringan
Dr. Ronald Ryder
FCAS’s mission includes promoting the appreciation, conservation, and restoration of ecosystems. First and foremost in that mission is education. And although FCAS does not have a chairman for the education committee, we still provide education to our membership and the public through our monthly programs and field trips.
Another method to provide environmental education, especially to youth, is the scholarship fund created about four years ago following the passing of a long time chapter member and retired wildlife instructor, Dr. Alexander Cringan. In fact, the membership form on the last page of every issue of the Ptarmigan contains the option to provide additional support for Alex Cringan Fund (natural history education grants). The purpose of the Cringan Fund is to provide financial assistance to educators involved in teaching natural sciences and environmental education so they may upgrade their skills and become more effective teachers.
A second scholarship fund that we financially support and promote is the Dr. Ronald A. Ryder Memorial Scholarship Fund. Dr. Ryder passed away last August. One of his former graduate student established the memorial fund through the CSU Foundation, to which FCAS has contributed $1,000. The purpose of this memorial fund is to provide a $1,000 scholarship to a CSU student who is studying birds in the Department of Fish, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology.
To contribute to the Alex Cringan Scholarship Fund, send a check to FCAS, P.O. Box 271968, Fort Collins, 80527-1968. To contribute to the Dr. Ryder Memorial Fund, send a check to the CSU Foundation, P.O. Box 1870, Colorado State University Foundation, Fort Collins, 80522. The check must specify the Dr. Ronald A. Ryder Memorial Scholarship Fund for it to be placed in the correct fund. Please mention that you are a member of the FCAS. Also, notify Scott Webb at the Colorado State University Foundation that you have made a contribution to the Dr. Ryder’s fund: Scott Webb, Executive Director of Advancement, Warner College of Natural Resources, 1401 Campus Delivery, Fort Collins, 80523-1401; 970-491-3594.
Both scholarship funds should provide long-lasting benefits to birds, wildlife, and the environment because they will provide training to educators and biologists who will work to raise environmental awareness in younger generations who will eventually be taxpayers and voters.