MINUTES OF THE 2013 DELEGATES’ MEETING
SEPTEMBER 19, 2013
AZAD Chairman Charlotte Powell called the 2013 Delegates’ Meeting to order at 5:00 pm on September 19, 2013, at the Hotel Deca in Seattle, Washington. She introduced the members of the Executive Board: Cheryl Hays, Memphis Zoo, Director—Conference Advisory; Larry Martin, Maryland Zoo at Baltimore, Director—Extension; Ann Pisani, Kansas City Zoo, Director—Public Relations; Mary Haga, Detroit Zoo, Membership Chairman; Pam Ryan, Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, Newsletter Editor; Deborah Moody, Denver Zoo, Secretary; Robert Ewald, Louisville Zoo, appointed Parliamentarian; and herself, Charlotte Powell, Philadelphia Zoo, Treasurer and AZAD Chairman.
Larry Martin, Director—Extension, gave the Report of the Credentials Committee. The report was adopted.
Larry Martin, Director—Extension read the roll call of zoos and aquariums. There were 33 Delegates present and with 7 Executive Board members, the total eligible votes were 40.
Norma Cole, Conference Chairman, Woodland Park Zoo, presented the report of the conference. There are 125 attendees at the conference.
Sue Weatherman, Denver Zoo, member of the Bylaws and Rules Committee read the Convention Rules as published in Symbiosis. The rules were adopted.
Norma Cole, Conference Chairman, outlined the programs and presentations for the conference.
Charlotte Powell appointed Robert Ewald as Timekeeper and also appointed Anna Martin, Marilyn Gray, and Dorothy Russell from Woodland Park Zoo as Tellers for the meeting.
Report of Officers
Mary Haga, Membership Chairman, stated there are presently 1,692 Individual Members; 1,608 are Docents, 44 Inactive Docents and 40 Associate Members. There are 90 Organizational Members. At the 2012 Delegates’ Meeting in Los Angeles, it was reported there were 96 Organizational Members and 1,747 Individual Members. This shows a decrease in membership by 55 Individual Members. This is an improvement over 2012 figures showing a loss of 212 members. The low point for membership numbers was in January 2013 with 1,649 members, so thus far we have increased 43 members since then. She stated that she thinks this is in part due to the efforts of the 2012 delegates. The number of Organizational Members has decreased by 6 members.
The following are new and rejoining organizations since AZAD 2012: Como Zoo and Conservatory and Tanganyika Wildlife Park. Unfortunately she reported that after several attempts to contact them, we lost the following organizations: Capron Park Zoo, Charles Paddock Zoo, Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, Palm Beach Zoo, Rosamond Grifford Zoo, San Diego Zoo, Sunset Zoo, and the Virginia Aquarium. These zoos/aquariums did not respond to the renewal efforts.
Charlotte Powell, Treasurer gave the report of the Budget and Finance Committee. The budget for 2013 – 2014 was highlighted. She then gave an abbreviated report of the Auditor’s Report. The full Auditor’s Report is available in the Conference Registration Room. The auditor stated that: “All deposits recorded were traced to appropriate bank statements to ensure accuracy. Ending bank balances were traced to bank reconciliations and traced to the general ledger. Disbursements exceeding $100.00 were traced to appropriate statements. No exemptions were found in any bank accounts. The preparation of Return of Organizations Exempt from Income Tax papers was filed. Tax returns were filed in a timely matter for the fiscal year November 1, 2011 to October 31, 2012.”
Charlotte read the following regarding the issues with the former Treasurer:
“At last year’s Delegates’ Meeting it was brought to the attention of the delegates that the previous treasurer was negligent in turning over the financial records. We did eventually account for all accounts except for $1,581.32. Because of this delay the tax report required to be filed was delayed. This resulted in a fine by the IRS of $2,560.12. When we received this fine we paid it immediately not to incur additional penalties. Our accountant wrote a letter to IRS explaining the issue. We were refunded the full amount.
In filing the taxes the IRS now had an address to contact someone from AZAD. We then received two notices of taxes that were filed late by the previous Treasurer, years 2008 and 2009. The 2008 & 2009 years’ taxes were not filed until December 2010. The previous Treasurer’s term ended October 2010.
The fines were $2,234.86 for year 2008 and $2,467.53 for year 2009. AZAD paid the fines.
There were several attempts to contact the previous Treasurer and also her accountant. A registered letter was sent to both. The previous Treasurer received the letter and signed for it. Several attempts were made to contact the accountant but he refused to accept the letter.
For this not to happen in the future I have added to the Treasurer’s responsibilities and the Secretary’s responsibilities:
At AZAD Executive Board interim meeting the Treasurer is to present a copy of the 990 tax form with a copy of the signed postal receipt that the taxes have been sent. All members of the Executive Board will sign the form stating the taxes have been filed with required copies and the Secretary will keep the copy and form in her/his records.”
Pam Ryan, Newsletter Editor, stated that 1,353 members are receiving the electronic version of the newsletter with 442 members still receiving mailed hard copies. Each mailed copy costs about $1.50 to print and mail to these members, so she encouraged those members to consider getting the electronic version instead to be more “green” and also to save the organization these costs. She published 5 issues in 2012 – 2013. In 2013 – 2014 issues will be published quarterly, January, April, July, October and the deadlines will be one month before the issue is published i.e. December 1st, March 1st, etc.
Cheryl Hays, Director—Conference Advisory, thanked Woodland Park Zoo and the Conference Committee for stepping in on short notice and hosting a Regional Conference for 2013. She outlined AZAD 2014 hosted by the Milwaukee Zoo and the dates for the 2014 conference are October 6 – October 12, 2014, registration will open April 1, 2014 and will be available online and mail in. The registration fee will be $240 per AZAD member. Milwaukee Zoo will have a presentation later in the conference.
In 2015, there will be two Regional Conferences. The El Paso Zoo, El Paso, Texas will host a conference May 6 – May 10. Derrill Rothermich provided an information sheet about the conference to each delegate. Nashville Zoo, Nashville, Tennessee, will host a Regional Conference and the Delegates’ Meeting August 25 – 30.
As of this date no zoo/aquarium has bid to host a conference in 2016. Cheryl encouraged the delegates to return to their respective institutions and talk about hosting this conference. If any institution is interested they should contact the Director—Conference Advisory for additional information.
Larry Martin, Director—Conference Advisory, gave the report of the Extension Committee, Travel subcommittee, and Social Media subcommittee.
The two-part Delegate Confirmation Form was eliminated and an easier, one-part form was created and mailed to delegates on March 26, 2013.
Larry has worked closely with Amanda Galiano, the Social Media Subcommittee Chairman and Webmaster regarding all social media issues. A special certificate of recognition was presented to Amanda Galiano in recognition of her work as the subcommittee chairman and Webmaster. In Amanda’s absence, Al Notter, Little Rock Zoo accepted the certificate and will give this to Amanda on his return to Little Rock. The AZAD Facebook page has grown and currently has 616 members. Facebook Monitors, Mary Lawrence, Woodland Park Zoo, and Ann Marie Fogarty, Brookfield Zoo, have closely monitored the postings. All new members to the Facebook page are welcomed with a standard message asking them to respect the AZAD Publication Guidelines and provided the link to the guidelines on the AZAD website.
The online membership registration and dues payment has been a joint effort with Extension, Treasurer, and Membership Chairman. It was successfully launched on April 1, 2013 and in the first 3 months, there were 250 total transactions, 32 new Individual
Memberships, 8 organizations renewing and 210 individual renewals. The Membership Chairman and Treasurer are happy with this set-up, finding it easier than a completely mail-in system.
Larry and other board members have worked with the Director—Public Relations with fine-tuning the “Why Join AZAD” PowerPoint recruiting tool.
In the absence of Bert DeVries, Travel Subcommittee Chairman, Larry stated that 21 people attended the trip to Cuba in February 2013; the November 2013 trip to South Africa/Botswana has two last-minute cancelations; there is a trip to Singapore/Borneo set for February 2014 and is full, a second departure has been arranged for late February/early March 2014; there was a flyer in the Delegate’s Packet regarding the Iceland trip in May 2014, 6 people have already signed up; Thailand will be the destination in January 2015. A thank you was extended to Kim Hoskins, San Antonio Zoo and Marilyn Cochran, Houston Zoo, members of the Travel Subcommittee. Larry also expressed thanks to Bert for the great job in planning and implementation of AZAD-sponsored trips.
Ann Pisani, Director—Public Relations, thanked committee members Tony Tront, Detroit Zoo, and Maureen Chambers, Louisville Zoo, for serving on the PR committee. Ann assumed the duties as Director—Public Relations in December 2012 and since then has joined AZA and renewed her membership to AAZK. For the first time, AZAD had a membership display at the 2013 AZA National Conference held in Kansas City. The display was well received by attendees.
The 2012 delegates were sent a questionnaire concerning: membership presentations to their zoos/aquariums, what name their organization calls “docents”, docent reasons for not joining AZAD and some additional questions. A revised PowerPoint entitled “Why Join AZAD?” was submitted to the Board and reviewed but this issue was tabled until after the 2013 Delegates’ Meeting. Several Canadian zoos/aquariums were mailed an invitation to join AZAD. So far, none have joined but they will receive another notice that will include information about the 2014 National Conference in Milwaukee.
Since December 2012, there have been 48 pins and 47 patches sold.
Sue Weatherman, Bylaws Committee member, read the report of the Bylaws Committee. The report is as follows: “We have reviewed the Association Bylaws that were most recently amended in 2010, and find no need for a complete revision of them. We present herein one amendment received from the AZAD Executive Board via Deborah Moody, Secretary, along with a summary of the submitted rationale for the Bylaws change. We also submit the Bylaws Committee’s recommendation with regard to the proposed amendment.
ARTICLE I- Name
The name of this organization shall be ASSOCIATION OF ZOO AND AQUARIUM DOCENTS AND VOLUNTEERS hereinafter known in these bylaws as the Association.
The AZAD Executive Board proposes this amendment. Zoos and Aquariums are increasingly using titles other than “docent” for volunteers involved in educating the public about zoos and aquariums. In response to Board inquiries of the 2012 Delegates, it was found that at least one-third of all zoos and aquariums no longer use the term “docent” to designate their volunteers. The Board considers it very important to keep the organization current and meaningful for members and prospective members. The intent of this change is to keep the organization in step with Association of Zoo and Aquariums policies regarding volunteers, increase the scope of papers and presentations, encourage new ideas and greater enthusiasm, and create a more inclusive sense of community for all zoo and aquarium volunteers.
Bylaws Committee Recommendation:
The committee carefully considered this request, and endorses this recommendation.”
There was discussion.
There was a motion made to amend the name change to Volunteers of Zoos and Aquariums. There was a second. Bob Ewald, Parliamentarian, stated this motion was out of order and was not to be considered.
The required two-thirds majority passed the amendment as proposed by the Executive Board. The vote was 28 for, 10 against and 2 not voting.
Sue Weatherman made the following motion: The Executive Board is authorized to take all steps necessary to implement the name change of the organization. This was seconded and passed by a vote of 33 for, 5 against, and 2 not voting.
Al Notter, Little Rock Zoo, Nominating Committee Chairman for 2012 – 2013 gave the report of the Nominating Committee. The committee recommended the following for election to the Executive Board: Ellen Kulie, Detroit Zoo, Director—Conference Advisory; Larry Martin, Maryland Zoo at Baltimore, Director—Extension; Ann Pisani, Kansas City Zoo, Director—Public Relations; Wendie Weare, Little Rock Zoo, Membership Chairman; Pam Ryan, Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, Newsletter Editor; Sue Gilbert, Los Angeles Zoo, Secretary; and Charlotte Powell, Philadelphia Zoo, Treasurer.
There were no additional nominations and the nominations were closed. A motion was made, seconded and passed to consider the slate as a whole when voting.
Nominations for the Nominating Committee for 2013 – 20014 were held. The following zoos/aquariums were not eligible: Albuquerque Biopark, Bergen County Zoo, Buffalo Zoo, Cameron Park Zoo, Denver Zoo, Detroit Zoo, Little Rock Zoo, Memphis Zoo, Oregon Zoo, Philadelphia Zoo, Phoenix Zoo, Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium, St. Louis Zoo, Santa Ana Zoo, Seneca Park Zoo, Staten Island Zoo, and Woodland Park Zoo.
The list of nominees are as follows: Patty Whitecotton, Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Gardens; Maureen Chambers, Louisville Zoo; Jan Richards, Los Angeles Zoo; Hilde Martin, Maryland Zoo at Baltimore; Pat Bradley, Smithsonian/National Zoo; and Diane Vogelsang, Cincinnati Zoo alternate.
There was a fifteen-minute break and the meeting was called back to order at 6:35 pm.
There were no additional recommendations from the Executive Board.
The election for the 2013 – 2014 Executive Board was then held. The following were elected: Ellen Kulie, Detroit Zoo, Director—Conference Advisory; Larry Martin, Maryland Zoo at Baltimore, Director—Extension; Ann Pisani, Kansas City Zoo, Director—Public Relations; Wendie Weare. Little Rock Zoo, Membership Chairman; Pam Ryan, Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, Newsletter Editor; Sue Gilbert, Los Angeles Zoo, Secretary; and Charlotte Powell, Philadelphia Zoo, Treasurer.
The following were elected to serve on the 2013 – 2014 Nominating Committee: Patty Whitecotton, Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Gardens; Maureen Chambers, Louisville Zoo; Jan Richards, Los Angeles Zoo; Hilde Martin, Maryland Zoo at Baltimore; Pat Bradley; Smithsonian/National Zoo; and Diane Vogelsang, Cincinnati Zoo alternate. A motion was made, seconded and passed that the members of the committee choose the committee chairman.
There was no new business.
Donna McGill, Philadelphia Zoo, AZAD Educational Grant Review Committee Chairman for 2012 – 2013 gave the committee’s report. The committee awarded one grant to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum.
There were no announcements.
The meeting was adjourned at 6:55 pm.
Deborah J. Moody