Cold rain and wind could not deter CAMN from our annual celebration of NiT graduation and membership milestones! On Thursday evening, May 15th, lots of the CAMNation assembled at the Big Maumelle Pavilion at PMSP for a delicious feast organized by Enhancinator Maggie Koone, who provided ham and turkey and plentiful beverages, both adult and otherwise. Attendees brought a fabulous assortment of side dishes and desserts (and I vote that we NEVER let Joellen Beard leave our organization - and I based this wholly on her corn pudding...)
The program of recognition moved along quickly thanks to the entertaining repartee of host, President Darcia Routh. Joellen started the program off with recognition of the
2014 Graduating Class. 25 men and women completed their training, racking up a total of 2163 training hours. 3 of them "fast-tracked" to also certify - Hannah Lynn, Carol Micik and Joe Tucker. Congratulations and Welcome!
We recognized 63 members who have certified or recertified so far this year. Since there are still a couple of weeks remaining in the year, there may be more who earn their pins. The beautiful pins were awarded, and the 5th year certifiers also received the coveted letter from Governor Beebe. New pins are now available from AMN for those who have certified beyond 5 years. There were 4 recognized for their 8th year to certify! They each received a pin for their 6th, 7th and 8th year. Congrats and THANKS to Tom Neale, Vera Bowie, Bill Toland and Bert Turner.
Recognitions continued for those who put in hours above and beyond those required. 22 from CAMNation were recognized for completing 100 to 250 hours of volunteer time. 6 CAMNers were recognized for completing 250 to 500 volunteer hours. But only one CAMN member (and cooincidently the 2014 AMN Master Naturalist of the Year) was recognized in the 750 to 1000 hour category: Bill Toland. In fact Bill is closer to the 1000 hour mark that the 750 - Bill, what would we do without you?
Of course one of the real highlights of this get-together is always the announcement of the CAMN Master Naturalist of the Year. This year was especially exciting because there was a tie for the honor! Recognized for his above and beyond service to 2 chapters (CAMN and DLAMN) and his active participation in many aspects of the organization was Jim Baggenstoss. Recognized for her contributions as the VP of Curriculum was Joellen Beard (Don't forget, she also contributed the corn pudding!) Congratulations, Jim and Joellen - thank you so much for the work you do for this organization.
Other thank you's were shared. Maryanne Stansbury, park interpreter at PMSP, has been a staunch supporter of CAMN. Maryanne is leaving to go to nursing school, so the board presented her with a thank you gift. We will really miss you, Maryanne! Thanks also went out to Katherine Becker for her wonderful work getting the DLAMN chapter up and running - Kudos, Katherine! And finally, a heartfelt thank you to Darcia Routh, our out-going president who has been at the helm for a year and a half, entertaining us all the way. Thank you, Darcia, for your leadership.
The final order of business was to elect the 2014/2015 CAMN Board. Members present unanimously approved the slate of officers:
President - Elizabeth Sartain, President Elect - Diane Brownlee, VP of Curriculum - Joellen Beard, Secretary - Mary DeRusse, Treasurer - Sherry Sanchez, Communication Coordinator - Jane Schroeder, AMN Member-at-Large - Dave Schroeder and CAMN Member-at-Large - Faith Morrison.
For addition pictures, follow this link: http://home.arkansasmasternaturalists.org/index.php?option=com_joomgallery&func=detail&id=1483&Itemid=50