The voting period for the 2019 election of WOS Officers and Board Members is now closed. Congratulations to the nominated officers and two new board members who were overwhelmingly elected. The 129 WOS members who voted did not write in any alternate names, though they had the option to do so.
President – Eric Dudley, DVM (129 votes)
Vice President – Jennifer Kauffman (129 votes)
Secretary – Tom Bancroft (128 votes)
Treasurer – Open
Bob Flores – Board Member (128 votes)
Will Brooks – Board Member (128 votes)
Ed Pullen – Board Member (128 votes)
Two continuing Board Members, Faye McAdams Hands and Kim Thorburn, will be starting the second year of their two year terms so were not included in this election.
The candidate statements by the officers and board members follow.
Eric Dudley, DVM – President
My wife Mary Kay and I have enjoyed our six years as members of WOS very much. Meeting many of our members over that time, whether it be while working on the Board and as an officer, going to a monthly meeting in Seattle, joining field trips or attending a conference, has all been great! Serving this last year as president has been a privilege, and I feel several consequential things have been accomplished (as detailed Saturday evening at Moses Lake). The “busyness” of these responsibilities has also helped me decompress, having lately retired from veterinary practice after 35 years. I thank you all for the opportunity!
Understanding that Jennifer is willing to be a candidate for president in 2020-21, (and can continue as V-P this next year), I’ve agreed to carry on in my present role for another year, subject to the upcoming vote of our members. I would welcome the chance to finish up several ongoing projects, including our financial review (along with restructuring the treasurer position consistent with best practices), as well as working on our September 2020 conference with OBA in Astoria, which is coming together in good form, we believe.
Once again, thank you for the opportunity to serve: it’s all about the birds!
Jennifer Kauffman – Vice President
Jennifer has been a member of WOS for more than five years and has thoroughly enjoyed many field trips and annual conferences across the state. She appreciates the opportunity to contribute her organizational and leadership skills to the organization. Jennifer grew up in Ohio exploring birds and nature. She studied environmental science and water resources management in college and graduate school. She was an environmental and public outreach consultant for more than 20 years, and then spent 15 years with King County managing wastewater capital projects. She retired from King County in 2016. Jennifer completed the Seattle Audubon Master Birder class in 2017. She is a past Seattle Audubon board member and continues to support its outreach, operations and science programs (Neighborhood Bird Project, Puget Sound Seabird Survey). She also served on the Vestry (board) at her church and volunteers at meals programs. Jennifer and her husband Jerry live in Seattle.
Tom Bancroft – Secretary
Tom Bancroft has been exceptional in his role as Secretary of WOS and becoming more involved with birding in Washington. He teaches birding for Eastside Audubon and the Mountaineers, where he helps lead their “Introduction to Natural World Course” and will chair their Naturalist group in the coming year. Tom currently serves on the scientific advisory board for BirdNote and previously was on the board of Washington Audubon Society and the Florida Ornithological Society. Tom has also been a board member of the Wilson Ornithological Society and the Ornithological Council. Seattle is now his home where he is working on writing and photography. Tom is a member of Seattle Audubon, Washington Environmental Council, Cornell Lab of Ornithology, the Mountaineers, and active in conservation issues. He leads field trips for Eastside Audubon, the Mountaineers as well as ones at the WOS conference. He will lead birding trips for the Mountaineers to Panama and Australia in the coming year.
For more than a decade, Tom worked on Everglades restoration issues for National Audubon Society and Archbold Biological Station before moving to Washington, DC. In D.C., he led the research department of The Wilderness Society and helped build conservation programs across the West and in Alaska. He then served as chief scientist for National Audubon Society, helping them expand their conservation work across the Americas. During that time, the Secretary of the Interior appointed him to a panel providing recommendations to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on the placement of wind turbines relative to birds and bats. Here in Washington state, he served two years on the Ecosystem Coordination Board and Northwest Straits Commission. He has a Ph.D. from the University of South Florida with an emphasis on ornithology. Tom has been building his Washington bird list and now only need three more species to catch his list for Queensland Australia. His daughter still lives in Australia, and he is planning a two-week birding trip in Queensland for next year so who knows if he will make it.
Although my interest in birding began earlier, it was not until I attended Humboldt University that I discovered a world of birders. It was from this experience I became much more serious about my hobby. I was fortunate to find a position with the National Wildlife Refuge System in 1982, although I had worked years prior for California Department of Fish and Game and as a private contractor, conducting waterfowl lead poisoning studies, running hunter check stations and three years studying black bears. The Refuge System offered me adventures — living across the United States — and I took advantage, working refuges in Florida, Alabama, Montana, twice in California, Nevada and again twice in Washington. I was able to bird across the country, and yes I have a healthy Lower-48 list. I ended my career in the regional office as the Refuge Supervisor for Washington, Oregon and Idaho. I retired in Ridgefield with my wife Cindy where we intend to stay. While in Nevada I helped establish the first state non-game bird plan through Partners in Flight and the creation of the Great Basin Bird Observatory. While in Othello, I assisted in making the Othello Sandhill Crane Festival the success it is today. While there in Othello, I served a term on the WOS board and afterwards continued to support the WOS Conference as a trip leader. Birding is not my only hobby: I also enjoy soccer, brewing beer, spending time with my four-year-old grandson Calvin and just about anything outside.
Will Brooks – Incoming Board Member Candidate
As a relative newcomer to Washington, I have been met with a warm welcome from Washington birders and WOS. Originally from Palo Alto, California, I came to Washington to go to school at the University of Puget Sound. Of course, as an avidbirder, I immediately started exploring Pierce County.I started to meet locaI birders and was struck by how different the Washington birding scene was from California. In Washington I quickly started making connections. I chose to be a biology major and art minor, becamea docent at the Slater Museum of Natural History, started leading on-campus bird walks, and planned to pursue a research-based career in evolutionary biology. My first project focused on song-recognition and hybridization in White-crowned Sparrows (see WOS newsletter 179 for my findings). I was honored to receive the Patrick Sullivan Young Birders Fund Award from WOS in order to fund this project.
Ed Pullen – Incoming Board Member Candidate
Candidate Ed Pullen is a longtime WOS member and Puyallup/Tacoma area birder. He is a semi-retired family physician and now has time to serve on the WOS board of trustees if elected. He is active in the Tahoma Audubon Society and the Tacoma area ABC Birding Club, as well as in the South Hill Rotary. He has trustee experience with the Good Samaritan Hospital board of trustees as well as serving as the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Sound Family Medicine for over a decade.