2018 is off to a great start for Umpqua Watersheds thanks to hard work by our staff, board of directors and volunteers. In November of last year the Board of Directors had its strategic planning meeting where we had the opportunity to review and discuss the progress made on the strategic plan that was established three years ago. Two areas of improvement we discussed was the need to establish regular office hours again and the importance to follow a governing structure outlined by organizational consultant Gary Smiley which defined roles of committees, staff and the board of directors.
Umpqua Watersheds currently has 7 standing committees; Conservation, Education, Facility, Finance, KQUA Radio, Restoration and our Wild on Wilderness (WOW) committee. These committees meet at least once a month to carry out their charter and provide reports to the Board of Directors. We also have ad hoc committees for special events such as the annual membership banquet, River Appreciation Day and the Umpqua Brew Fest. It is amazing to see how well our committees work and the progress they make to move UW forward in the quest to achieve our strategic goals and our mission to protect and restore the Umpqua Watershed and beyond through education, advocacy and ecologically sound stewardship. That being said, we need more help! Please consider volunteering for our committees if you have interest and expertise that you believe can help.
Welcome to our new Office Manager, Melanie MacKinnon, who grew up in Juneau, AK and moved to Roseburg in 2008. Even then, she was no stranger to Roseburg, as she visited her grandparents here when she was young. She received her B. A. from Western Washington University and has a passion for solar energy, energy efficiency, and our local community. MacKinnon Energy Solutions is Melanie’s own consulting business where she is an energy consultant and grant writer. She is a certified Solar Photovoltaic Technician and is a Board member of Douglas County Global Warming Coalition. Melanie has been significantly involved in several volunteer groups and events including the DC Smart Energy Group, Green Energy and Solar Tour, and Earth Day and Energy Fair. Her office hours are 1-5 M-W, 9-1 Th-F. Stop in and say “hi” to our newest staff member.
Our Annual Membership Banquet and Auction will be on April 14 at Umpqua Community College. Our keynote speaker will be Chuck Willer from the Coast Range Association will speak on “Challenging Wall Street Forestry.” His presentation will focus on the connection between investment resource extraction, “management” practices to push monoculture tree plantations and their impact on land, water, wildlife and humans.
Tickets will go on sale by March 15th. The Banquet Committee meets on Thursdays at 6:30pm. We need help securing items for the auction. If you have items to donate please stop by the office or contact Melanie at firstname.lastname@example.org. All items are tax deductible. The banquet and auction have been one of UW’s major sources of funding so we need your support!
In July of last year Umpqua Watersheds took ownership of our building. We are still so amazed and grateful for this donation. With ownership comes responsibility and our Facilities Management Committee spends many hours each month working with our tenants, planning and making repairs and working to the building.
Finally, I want to say thanks to everyone who donated to Umpqua Watersheds during our year end appeal. The response was amazing and we are very grateful to everyone who stepped up and made a contribution and/or renewed. I am so proud and grateful for the opportunity to be associated with Umpqua Watersheds. We have many challenges ahead of us but with determination, hard work and collaboration we will continue to be a force for good in our community.