by Sarah Kendrick, Pete Monacell, and Paul McKenzie

Editor: Brad Jacobs was a longtime Columbia Audubon Society member and incredible person and ornithologist who truly left a legacy for bird conservation not only in Missouri, but worldwide. Former State Ornithologist Sarah Kendrick penned this call to action for all of us as a way to commemorate his unfortunate passing four years ago on May 1.  

I’ve decided that every year on May 1, I’m going to go birding in honor of my good friend and mentor Brad Jacobs. May 1 marks the 4th anniversary of his passing. I wondered if others who knew and loved Brad would also want to go birding across the state, or wherever you are, on this date. Brad loved teaching others about birds in a generous way, without ego. If you know of someone who is interested in birding and needs a mentor, consider taking them along to learn.

Also, Brad had a lot of foresight when it came to eBird. Early on, he saw the potential of this online tool to help plan bird distribution and conservation globally. If you choose to go out on May 1, I encourage you to submit your sightings on and share the list with username birdforbrad – that way all the sightings from folks who go birding for Brad will be compiled in one place. Just share your list(s) with this username under Share before you submit on your app or online. I’ll share some stats from the account after the day.

We hope you’ll join us birding on May 1 wherever you are, or however long you can. We feel that nothing would honor Brad’s memory more than getting outdoors and spending some time with our beloved birds.

Thanks, and happy birding!