November 20, 2019

President John Besser called the meeting to order at 6 p.m.

Present: John Besser, Nancy Bedan, Lottie Bushmann, Laura Hillman, Greg Leonard, Bill Mees, Doug Miller, Eric Reuter, Joanna Reuter, Allison Vaughn, Eric Wood, and Jean Neely, newly appointed board member

Board Vacancy: John B reported that Jean Neely has agreed to fill the current vacancy on the board. Bill M moved (Doug M seconded) appointment of Jean Neely to fill the vacant seat on the Board of Directors. Motion approved without dissent.

Minutes: Two changes were requested in minutes from the October meeting: The education report was corrected to say the CAS area covers six, not five, counties, and the property owner’s name was deleted from the property-visit report. Bill M moved (Doug M seconded) approval of the Oct. 16 minutes as amended. Motion approved without dissent.

Treasurer’s Report: Board members noted that income from local memberships has reached $2,284. Doug M said that there are still additional dues in the CAS PayPal account, which aren’t reflected in the current report.

Liability Insurance: Eric S presented information about field-trip insurance from Pachner & Associates, a company that specializes in providing insurance for non-profit, conservation and education groups. The company requires organizations to submit a liability waiver form before it will provide insurance quotes. Board members discussed the pros and cons of a draft “Sign-in Sheet and Liability Waiver” provided by Eric S. CAS Field Trip Chair Eric R suggested postponing the liability insurance question and having a broader discussion of the purpose and goals of the CAS field trip program first. John B asked Eric R to form a committee to review the field trip program and report back to the board.

CoMoGives: Nancy B reported that she and Lori Hagglund attended the Nov. 14 CoMoGives kickoff event and have copies of the printed “Giving Guide” for distribution. Two CAS e-mail appeals have been sent and another eight are scheduled. Several posts about CoMoGives will be shared with the CAS Facebook group. A postcard appeal will be mailed to members and previous donors in early December. Nancy encouraged board members to visit and make a “Time and Talent” pledge to help CAS with the fundraiser. She has bookmarks from the CAS 60th anniversary celebration if board members would like to enclose them in notes or letters encouraging family members and friends to make donations to CAS during the CoMoGives drive.

Boone County Nature School: John B reported that he and Bill M met with representatives of the Boone County Nature School, which will be located between Columbia and Ashland on a 207-acre tract donated by the Waters-Russell family. The property is adjacent to the Three Creeks Conservation Area. Bill said the project partners, which include the Columbia Public Schools and the Missouri Department of Conservation, will need to raise about $1.5 million for the school and other facilities. Columbia Audubon has been asked to be a “founding partner” and contribute to the project. Funds are needed to construct a shelter in a forested part of the property, which would require a donation of $25,000 or more. John noted that CAS members would need to approve the contribution. John will schedule a special board meeting in December where Nature School representatives will provide more information about the project and the support Columbia Audubon could provide. The board could then present a proposal for supporting the project at the regular CAS membership meeting in January and schedule a vote on the proposal at the February membership meeting.

Special Board Meeting: John B will poll board members about possible December meeting dates to discuss options for supporting the Nature School.

The meeting was adjourned at 6:55 p.m.