Almost ten years ago, I was honored to be invited to join the Board of Directors of Umpqua Watersheds. It has been a wonderful experience to share the challenges that threaten the natural world with such a diverse Board. So much change is transpiring in the web of life that without their mutually beneficial cooperation, we wouldn’t be able to keep track of it all. It is enriching to work with people of such different backgrounds and world views. Our common bond is hope for the earth and its beleaguered inhabitants. I’ve watched the organization develop steadily through its growing pains. I’ve experienced the deeply rewarding experience of successful conservation campaigns. To be sure, living and working here in the heart of Douglas County, Oregon has its own unique requirements for adapting to the work at hand. After a decade of ardent effort to conserve and restore our intensely impacted environment my sense of respect for the conservation community and the unique role Umpqua Watersheds plays in that community, has not diminished. The palpable sense of honor, responsibility and humility engendered by working with this organization increases through each and every challenge we face on behalf of the living world.
This coming April 13th, Umpqua Watersheds will once again host its Annual Banquet and Silent Auction. At the banquet, we hope to effectively inform you of our endeavors, glean your much needed support and solicit the participation of a special few of you to join the Board of Directors. I would especially like to see the next generation of our community join and grow with us to ensure the legacy of life purposed by Umpqua Watersheds. When I became a Board member I brought little more than a passion to restore our ecosystems and protect those areas of untrammeled ancient forests within the Umpqua Watershed. I didn’t bring much more information than the years I had experienced as an advocate for aquatic habitat restoration. To be sure, there is a learning curve when one becomes involved but that points right back to the current Board and its willingness to nurture new members through the learning process. If you have a deep sense of environmental justice, a love for the living world or a hope for a thriving community within a healthy environment, please come to the banquet prepared to volunteer for one or more of our committees or for a seat on the Board of Directors.
Needless to say, financial backing is greatly needed. Our vision for the future is to sustain a well equipped staff to formally address the consistent attacks on the world of nature that surrounds us. Currently most of our labors are supported by volunteer Board and organization members. Our dream is to have paid staff with the skill sets to take our current volunteer efforts to the next level. This is a critically needed advance to the fulfillment of our mission and vision. If possible, please consider contributing regularly to this effective visionary organization or place Umpqua Watersheds in your trust or will. A monthly or annual commitment that we could rely upon would greatly enhance our capacity to hire skilled workers able to consolidate the legal, scientific and social tools needed to accomplish the Umpqua Watersheds purpose.
I would like to especially express my sincere gratitude to all of our donors and paying members. You are the ones who have kept the Umpqua Watersheds mother ship sailing the turbulent seas of modern life. You helped us set our course with confidence over the years.
Umpqua Watersheds wants to see you at the Banquet for a time of common fellowship. Bring a friend and share the joy. April 13, 2019. Be looking for more information in this newsletter.