Annual Meeting Report
By Blue Evening Star
FOSCR held its 2021 Annual Meeting on Saturday April 17th. The meeting was conducted on Zoom from 1 – 2:30 pm.
As this was our first time having an event online, we learned a lot about how it’s done. While an online meeting will never replace a meeting face-to-face with our friends — and especially in the great outdoors — we were happy with the results.
This meeting was officiated by Scott Vandervoet. He is a past-president of FOSCR who participated in FOSCR river clean-ups when he was a boy growing up in Santa Cruz County. (We have pics of him in our archives).
One of the main purposes of the annual meeting is for general membership to vote to confirm the slate of board members for the upcoming year. This was accomplished! We are happy to report that the seven existing board members plus four fantastic new members were approved.
- Ben Lomeli
- Scott Vandervoet
- Larry Taylor
- Lah-May Bremer
- Reid Penland
- Blue Evening Star
- Sheila Slaughter
- Laurinda Oswald
- Rich Kiker
- Nohe Garcia
- Riky Arboisiere
Go to “Meet the Board “on FOSCR website to see our biographies.
As Scott shared during the meeting, our by-laws allow the addition of new board members (voted on by existing board) any time of the year. Please contact us if you are interested in becoming a board member of FOSCR. Since we currently have 11 on the board there is room for 2 more. General membership is always welcome and needed as well. You can easily find how to join on our website (under “GET INVOLVED”).
Our current President (Ben Lomeli) opened up the meeting with a brief and informative talk on what’s happening at FOSCR. He spoke about retirements and departures that occurred in 2020. This included Sherry Sass who was the catalyst and backbone of FOSCR since its inception in 1991. Adjusting to changes (arising from COVID-19 and the retirement of a few board members) caused a time of transition and change for FOSCR.
This was ably tackled by a Revitalization Committee that met via phone conference and Zoom during the latter part of 2020. Out of that came many plans to continue ongoing projects and create new ones. Ongoing activities include:
- Reviewing Mission Statement and By-Laws and looking at creating a new Vision Statement
- Recruiting new board members from a selected list
- Creating an Orientation Packet for new members
- Describing FOSCR’s Functions and Supporting Programs
- Definitions and Acronyms used at FOSCR
- Ground Rules for communications
- Project Check Sheet
- Strategic Planning
- Re-publishing The Rambler’s Guide with hiking trails added and a Spanish translation
- Website and social networking upgrades
- Adopt-A-River Program
- RiverWatch Program (gathering monthly scientific data)
- Quality control upgrade & Manual
- Monitoring legislation, Cross-border effluent flows, mines, illegal dumping, Ruby Rd bridge work, media interviews
- Building GIS capabilities
- Building and Nurturing Partnerships
- Finding a way to safely host River Clean-Ups
Ben concluded by emphasizing the importance of not allowing our differences (as a nation) divide us. Let us seek common ground to build productive partnerships.
Next the “floor” was given to our main speaker, Diane E. Austin — Professor and Director, School of Anthropology, University of Arizona. She spoke about Problems and Possibilities for Arizona Borderland Waterways. Her presentation included an in-depth power point to illustrate many of the points she shared with us. As always, Professor Austin shared fascinating history, context for current problems and possibilities, and ideas for solutions.
Many participants asked questions which quickly became a brainstorm about ways to rebuild essential cross-border relationships that had been largely severed over the past few years.
We want to heartily thank Professor Austin and everyone else who supported FOSCR (and the riparian life-force of our home region) by attending this meeting.
- Bob Love – Superintendent
- Tumacácori National Historical Park https://www.nps.gov/tuma/index.htm
- Dona Jenkins
- Volunteer in California working diligently to upgrade FOSCR website via Catch-a-Fire grant
- Cynthia Shoemaker
- Long-time FOSCR board member (retired)
- John Szafranski
- Former Treasurere of FOSCR
- Karin Stanley
- Kate Penland – Board President
- Tubac Community Center Foundation https://tubaccommunitycenter.org/
- Sharie Shute
- Jennifer Martin
- Beth Taylor
We will continue to make our best efforts to “ensure a continued flow of the river’s surface waters, promote the highest river water quality achievable, and to protect and restore the riparian ecosystem and diversity of life supported by the river’s waters”.