The Southwestern Association of Naturalists
Minutes of the Meeting of the Board of Governors and Officers
Thursday, 19 April 2001
John T. Baccus, Troy L. Best, Brian R. Chapman, Jerry R. Choate, Brenda S. Clark, Bryon K. Clark, Robert C. Dowler, Anthony A. Echelle, Stanley F. Fox, Jennifer K. Frey, Meredith Hamilton, Clark Hubbs, Michael L. Kennedy, Phyllis Kennedy, Edie Marsh-Matthews, William J. Matthews, Karen McBee, J. Kelly McCoy, David L. McNeely, Cornelio Sanchez-Hernandez, Gary D. Schnell, Robert S. Sikes, William Stark, Bruce G. Stewart, Philip D. Sudman, Christopher Taylor, Ronald Van Den Bussche, Paula S. Williamson, Earl G. Zimmerman.
President Best called the meeting to order at 1300 CST with a quorum of Officers and Governors present.
Committee reports were taken first.
The BOG approved the Minutes of the Board of Governors and Officers and the Minutes of the Business Meeting for the 47th Annual Meeting at Denton as printed in The Southwestern Naturalist 45(4):547-562, December 2000.
Treasurer Brenda Clark reported 2000 income of $73,939 (including $45,193 from dues, $3,652 from contributions and meeting proceeds, $22,296 from page charges, $2,104 from sale of back issues, $376 from royalties, and $318 from earned interest). She reported expenses totaling $51,839 including $555 for returned checks and other bank fees; $3,017 for Treasurer's expenses (office help $2,000, office supplies $112, postage $730, printing $211); editorial expenses of $4,922 (office help $4,000, mailing $322, indexing $300, Spanish abstracts $300); printing The Southwestern Naturalist 44(4) - 45(3) $39,164; Wilks Award $250; Student Poster Award $150; plaques for award recipients $1,908; tax preparation charges $300; merchant card fees $155; bonding fee $561; President's contingency fund $800; and Historian's expenses $49. The checkbook balance at the year 's beginning was $25,995; income exceeded expenses by $22,108; $24,108 was transferred to the Trustees for investment; the checkbook balance ended the year at $23,995.
Treasurer Clark also reported that membership as of December 2000 (including 132 new members) numbered 1,273. New members' names were listed in the Treasurer's Report and were to be submitted for members' approval at the Business Meeting. Clark further reported that the primary interests of members were; mammals 369; amphibians and reptiles 283; birds 229, plants 189; invertebrates 174; and fishes 170. All interest categories represent increases since December 1999.
Clark presented projected 2000 income and expenses each at $67,235 as approved at the 2000 BOG meeting. Details of the 2001 budget and projected 2002 income and budget were left for New Business.
Treasurer Clark also reported that the Financial Review that was done in 2000 as requested by the BOG, and referenced in her written report, revealed no irregularities. There was some discussion of the nature of a financial review and how it differs from the report of the Budget Oversight Committee. Clark responded that the Budget Oversight Committee Report makes suggestions as to budget details, while the Financial Review, like an audit, attempts to determine whether SWAN books are kept in accordance with standard procedures and legal requirements. She also pointed out that a committee is working on constitutional amendments to modify the review and report procedures in these areas. The BOG thanked Clark for her report and her work for SWAN.
Jerry Choate reported for the Trustees (Chair Choate, David Schmidly, Terry Yates) that: (1) Despite the fact that 2000 was a complex and dramatically negative year in the stock markets, SWAN assets increased in value by $16,110.72 to $301,020.34 from 31 December 1999 to 31 December 2000, or 5.7% including $24,107 in new assets from contributions; (2) Actual market performance resulted in a loss of 2.8%; (3) Considering overall market performance as represented by various indices that ranged from -4.7% to - 39.3%, SWAN investments performed relatively well due to effective diversification among investment classes. Choate also reported that SWAN assets have declined slightly so far in 2001. Details of the investment activity of the Trustees and results thereof are contained in the Trustees written report. The BOG thanked Choate and the Trustees for their work and success on behalf of the organization.
Phyllis Kennedy reported for the Budget Oversight Committee (Chair Kennedy, William Baltosser, Robert Edwards, Beth Leuck) that the committee had examined the Trustees' records, the Treasurers' records and the current and proposed budgets, and found all aspects of the fiscal operation of the association to be in good order. The committee did recommend that the budget should include income and any expenses due to handling of back-issue sales, and that the funds involved should be maintained in the Treasurer's accounts. The committee also recommended closing the Managing Editor's account to save the cost of maintaining it, and having all the Managing Editor's expenses paid out of the Treasurer's account.
Karen McBee, Managing Editor, reported that Volume 45 and Volume 46(1) of The Southwestern Naturalist were successfully published with no delays and that 46(2) was in proof. McBee also reported that her office has been successful at reducing the time lag for publication (from an average of 11 months in 1999-2000 to 8.7 months in 2000-2001 from acceptance to publication).
McBee also reported that Loren Ammerman of The University of Texas at Arlington (Mammals), and Chris Lauver of the Kansas Biological Survey (Plant Taxonomy) have successfully completed their first year as Associate Editors, and that Paul R. Krausman of The University of Arizona (Conservation and Management) and David Edds (Fishes) have completed their terms as Associate Editors. She then announced that Cheri A. Jones of the Denver Museum of Nature and Science will replace Krausman, and that David Propst of the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish will replace Edds, as earlier approved by the BOG.
McBee then thanked Susan Perea Fox for her service as Editorial Assistant for Spanish Abstracts, Stanley Fox for his service as Associate Editor for Spanish Abstracts, and Silvia Frutos for performing both of the Fox's responsibilities while they were on sabbatical. She also thanked Meredith Hamilton and Gregory M. Wilson for their service as Editorial Assistants, and Troy Best for his work in producing the annual index.
The Managing Editor also announced that the editorial office is now using electronic media (disk) for sending materials to Allen Press, and that guidelines for authors for disk submission of manuscripts are being developed and will be posted on the SWAN web page. The BOG thanked McBee for her work and that of the editorial staff, and for her report.
Anthony A. Echelle reported for the Honors Committee (Chair Echelle, Alice F. Echelle, Gary A. Heidt, Michael L. Kennedy, William J. Matthews, Gary D. Schnell) that nominations were received for the W. Frank Blair Eminent Naturalist Award, the Robert L. Packard Outstanding Educator Award, and the Meritorious Service Award, complete with curriculum vitae, nomination letters, and support letters, and he moved as committee chair that 1 nomination for each award be approved without identification so that the award could be announced at the Business Meeting as is traditional. The motion was seconded and passed.
Paula S. Williamson reported for the Conservation Committee (Chair Jennifer K. Frey, David J. Hafner, Steve R. Sheffield, Caryn C. Vaughn, Rocky Ward) that the committee reviewed The Southwestern Naturalist and selected a nominee for the George M. Sutton Award for Conservation Research for 2000. The committee chose, "Effects of Red Shiner (Cyprinella lutrensis) on Red River Pupfish (Cyprinodon rubrofluviatilis)," published in The Southwestern Naturalist 44(3):287-295, authored by Keith Gido, Jacob F. Schaefer, Kirsten Work, Philip W. Lienesch, Edie Marsh-Matthews, and William J. Matthews. The Board previously had approved this nomination by mail ballot, and President Best had notified the authors of the award to be given at the banquet on Friday.
The committee also reported that Cheri Jones and Patricia Mehlhop have resigned from the Conservation Committee after many years of dedicated service, and that new committee members will be nominated after the 2001 meeting.
Paula S. Williamson reported for the Wilks Award Committee (Chair Williamson, Kelly McCoy, Jim Ott, Robert Owen, and Caryn Vaughn) that 6 abstracts were received and reviewed, and that 4 were selected as finalists for presentation at the Plenary Session. The winner was to be announced and would receive the award at the banquet on Friday. Williamson also announced that 28 posters were entered in the Student Poster Competition, and the results from that competition were also to be announced and the award presented at the banquet, following judging by a committee consisting of Edie Marsh-Matthews (chair), Troy Baird, and Robert Owen.
Williamson further reported that the names of the 2000 Distinguished Award recipients (David E. Brown for the W. Frank Blair Eminent Naturalist Award, Edie Marsh-Matthews for the Robert L. Packard Outstanding Educator Award, Michael L. Kennedy and Phyllis Kennedy for the Southwestern Association of Naturalists Meritorious Service Award, and Keith B. Gido, Jacob F. Schaefer, Kirsten Work, Philip W. Lienesch, Edie Marsh-Matthews, and William J. Matthews for the George Miksch Sutton Award in Conservation Research) were provided to Susan Smith of BioGraphics for preparation of award plaques.
Robert S. Sikes reported for the Public Relations and Publicity Committee (Chair Sikes, Stan Gehrt, Meredith J. Hamilton, Renn Tumlison, and Kathryn Vaughn). The committee publicized the awards given last year by announcements to appropriate media outlets and institutions and planned to make similar announcements this year. Because the committee reported that it has never received any feedback from the media to which it communicates information, members of the BOG suggested that the committee could specifically ask for copies of any stories or press releases that the media outlets publish or the institutions promulgate. The committee chair indicated that he would ask for such feedback.
Phillip Sudman reported for the Membership Committee (Chair Sudman, Bryon K. Clark, Joseph D. Maness, Dwight W. Moore, Miguel A. Mora, and Christopher M. Taylor) that the committee developed and distributed newly designed recruitment brochures, including to contributing authors. He also reported that the committee will be sending reminder letters to lapsed members in May, an effort that last year resulted in greater than 20% of such members renewing. Sudman further reported that last year there were 19 free student memberships awarded, and that 8 of those members have renewed for this year. The committee plans to continue this effort with committee approval. A motion was made and seconded to offer up to 33 free student memberships to students recommended by current members. The motion was approved.
There was a query as to whether recruitment brochures are mailed with the meeting announcements, and the answer was "no." The Treasurer reported that some recruitment brochures have been mailed in to her with membership applications, suggesting that the brochures are effective.
Anthony Echelle reported for the Development Committee (Chair Echelle, Robert J. Baker, David Heins, Jerry D. Johnson, David J. Schmidly, Kathryn Vaughn; ex officio members Jerry R. Choate and Brenda S. Clark) that the committee has been inactive during the last year.
Historian Meredith J. Hamilton reported that she needs materials for the archives, particularly materials from Past Presidents. She thanked those persons who have provided photographs from last year's meeting, and particularly Jan Hoover, who donated photographs of award winners and Dwight Moore who donated photographs from the banquet. Troy Best appealed to the BOG to provide as much material as they have and to encourage other members in this endeavor. William J. Matthews mentioned the particular value of interviews with senior members, particularly those who were charter members.
Ronald A. Van Den Bussche, Chair, reported for the Program Committee (Van Den Bussche, George D. Baumgardner, Salvador Contreras-Balderas, Robert J. Edwards, Earl G. Zimmerman) that planning is underway for the 2002 meeting in Cuernavaca, Mexico, as is planning for the 2003 50th Anniversary Meeting in Norman, Oklahoma. He also called on the BOG membership to assist in solicitation of a host for the 2004 and later meetings.
Committee reports being completed, the BOG took up Old Business:
Committee reports being completed, the BOG took up Old Business: Bruce Stewart reported for the Ad hoc Committee for International Relations (Stewart and Salvador Contreras-Balderas Co-Chairs, Topiltzin Contreras MacBeath, Robert J. Edwards, Stanley F. Fox, Robert D. Owen) that the committee has been in communication with the hosts for the 2002 meeting in Cuernavaca (Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Morelos) and that the personnel there are clearly excited about the meeting and the numbers of Mexican biologists that they expect to attend. Stewart also reported that he will provide travel instructions for the 2002 meeting as he did for the 1999 meeting, and warned those who will be driving that though driving is a perfectly practical and reasonable thing to do, they must absolutely follow all Mexican border-crossing regulations or face difficulties.
Paula Williamson reported for the ad hoc Committee on Botanical Concerns (O. W. Van Auken Chair, Williamson, Ed Leuck) that the committee has taken no new actions this year, but that due to successful actions by SWAN in the past, botanical membership and participation have increased substantially. She suggested that perhaps the committee is no longer needed, but no action was taken with regard to the committee status.
Chair Robert C. Dowler reported that the ad hoc Committee on Disposal of Back Issues of The Southwestern Naturalist has been successful in its task of disposal, and reminded the BOG that all back issues remaining are stored at Angelo State University at no cost to SWAN. Consequently, the committee is self-supporting, and generated $1,200 income to the treasury in 2000. Dowler also briefly discussed the impracticality of closing the bank account in San Angelo and having all monetary transactions handled by the Treasurer, but stated that the committee would do whatever was in the best interest of SWAN. No direction to close or not close the account was given by the BOG.
In the absence of Dwight W. Moore, Chair of the ad hoc Web Site Committee (Moore, Brenda S. Clark, Karen McBee, Linda Rice), there was no report from that committee. Several members offered suggestions for possible improvements to the web site or for facilitating its maintenance. It was pointed out that Moore's absence was due to university duties. No actions regarding the web site were taken.
Bryon K. Clark reported for the ad hoc Committee on the 50th Anniversary (Chair Clark, Karen McBee, Dwight W. Moore) that the committee has received requests for 60 of the commemorative pins it has produced, resulting in donations of $3,000 to the Student Research Fund. He also reported on planning for the 50th Anniversary Meeting in Norman, Oklahoma in 2003. The committee has been and will continue calling on other SWAN members to assist in anniversary celebration planning, especially in providing historical materials. Some of the activities planned for the meeting include the possibility of publishing a history of SWAN in the journal, a poster/multimedia presentation at the meeting of historical material, presentation of a SWAN charter membership genealogy tracing ancestral and descendent relationships, and a special symposium at the meeting on a topic of general interest to the SWAN membership such as "Changes in the Southwestern Biota During the Past 50 Years."
Clark then reported that Marion McCarley made a $1,000 donation to the Howard McCarley Student Research Fund. The committee then recommended that the BOG begin funding student research awards next year from the treasury, pending accumulation of sufficient resources for the fund to be self supporting.
William J. Matthews moved, there was a second, and the motion passed that the BOG extend a vote of thanks to Marion McCarley for her generous donation. Paula S. Williamson, President-Elect then said that she will write a letter thanking Mrs. McCarley on behalf of SWAN.
Bryon Clark then issued several appeals to the membership to provide needed service to benefit the 2003 50th Anniversary Meeting. Needs he addressed were: (1) Someone to write a history of SWAN since 1983; (2) Materials for a multimedia presentation on past SWAN activities; (3) Information on charter members and attendees at the first meeting, especially academic genealogy information and information as to who their students were. There were 108 charter members and 52 or 53 persons attended the first meeting; (4) Development of a theme for the meeting; (5) Someone to chair a symposium for the meeting.
There was considerable discussion of these ideas, and Clark emphasized the need for a symposium topic and chair to be settled right away. Discussion centered around biotic change in the Southwest, but no action was taken to define the symposium topic pending a volunteer coming forward to organize it.
Michael L. Kennedy reported for the Long Range Planning Committee (Chair Kennedy, Jerry R. Choate, Bryon K. Clark, Salvador Contreras-Balderas, Anthony A. Echelle, Robert J. Edwards, Celia Lopéz-González, Edie Marsh-Matthews, Dwight W. Moore, O. W. Van Auken, Caryn Vaughn). The committee is charged to examine the existing structure and role of SWAN and to provide direction for future growth and development. The committee had no new recommendations after last year's extensive report.
The BOG then heard from Edie Marsh-Matthews on the drafts of the proposed constitutional amendments that the BOG at the 2000 meeting approved drafting and presenting during this year. After much discussion of each proposed amendment, the BOG took the following actions: Upon a motion and second, the BOG by majority vote approved wording for Amendment 1 as follows:
"The Treasurer shall present a financial review conducted by an independent agent to the Board of Governors every 5 years, when a new Treasurer takes office, or at the President's request. This amendment replaces the provision for an annual audit as specified in Article III, Section 17."
Upon a motion and second, the BOG by majority vote approved wording for Amendment 2 as follows:
"The Immediate Past-President shall deliver the Address at the Annual Banquet the first year after becoming Past-President. The President shall select the speaker in alternate years. This amendment replaces the provision that the Immediate Past-President select the speaker in alternate years as specified in Article III, Section 14."
Upon a motion and second, the BOG by majority vote approved wording for Amendment 3 as follows:
"The Board of Governors may create additional Standing Committees of the Association by majority vote. These additional standing committees shall remain until such time as dissolved by a
majority vote of the Board.
Marsh-Matthews pointed out in her report the constitutional provisions for consideration and adoption of constitutional amendments. The constitution requires the BOG to consider any proposed amendment presented over the signatures of at least 10 members, and that the Secretary shall mail ballots to the membership, which must be returned within 45 days to be valid. Amendments must be adopted by a two-thirds majority of the members voting.
There was some discussion of the logistics for ballot distribution and counting. Resolution of this matter was left to the discretion of the President and the Secretary, who will work together to complete the balloting process and report to the BOG, applying the constitutional provisions for member's consideration of proposed constitutional amendments.
The BOG recessed for a short break at 3:43 p.m. and reconvened at 4:00 p.m.
Old Business being concluded, the BOG took up New Business:
Brenda S. Clark had provided a written report on the 2001 and proposed 2002 budgets. There was a motion for approval, a second, and discussion followed.
Clark answered several questions concerning specific items in the budget. Amendments were offered, seconded, and passed for the following adjustments to the 2002 budget proposal:
Journal printing and postage was reduced from $52,000 to $50,200. Editorial expenses were increased from $5,100 to $6,400. A line item for Historian's expenses of $300 was added.
A line item for Back Issues expenses of $200 was added. The BOG approved a balanced budget of $66,700 to be presented to the membership at the Annual Business Meeting. The BOG then thanked Clark for her work as Treasurer.
Following a motion and a second to do so, David McNeely was reappointed as Secretary, Brenda S. Clark was reappointed as Treasurer, Karen McBee was reappointed as Managing Editor, Ronald A. Van Den Bussche was reappointed as Program Director through the 2002 Annual Meeting.
Following a motion and a second, Jerry R. Choate was appointed to another term as a member of the Board of Trustees.
Robert Owen and Bruce Stewart reported for the Local Committee on the upcoming meeting in 2002 in Cuernavaca. The dates for the meeting were set by the Local Committee to be 25 - 27 April.
There was considerable discussion regarding the meeting dates for this upcoming meeting. A large contingent of BOG members was in favor of asking the Local Committee to move the meeting time to mid-May, to better fit with academic schedules of prospective attendees. Lively discussion resulted in no action being taken. There was also substantial sentiment for setting future SWAN meetings in May, and there was considerable discussion, which again resulted in no action. Among the points that were presented were (1) the April meeting dates originally, given academic calendars of the times, allowed for associated field trips, which no longer seem to be a part of SWAN, (2) students are busy with exams (as are faculty members) during late April, (3) most personnel would be in a position to better benefit from the meeting dates after the end of the spring semester, (4) the 2003 meeting date is irrevocably set in April, due to facilities constraints, (5) many students have plans for other activities away from campus in May, and so there is no certainty that May meetings would be better for students, (6) it might be valuable to survey the membership on this matter before taking any action.
Ronald A. Van Den Bussche reported for the Program Committee that the dates for the 2003 50th Anniversary Meeting will be 17- 19 April, and that the meeting will be on the main campus of The University of Oklahoma in Norman, Oklahoma. Some campus housing will be available for attendees. He also said that the Program Committee is desirous of receiving invitations for 2004 and future times
On a motion, a second, and a unanimous vote, the BOG appointed Topiltzin Contreras McBeath to serve as the Local Representative for the 2002 meeting in Cuernavaca.
The 2001 BOG meeting adjourned at 4:55 p.m.
Respectfully submitted by David L. McNeely, Secretary.
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