NANPS 2012 AGM
The North American Native Plant Society's 2012 Annual General Meeting took place on Saturday, October 20th in the Canada Room at the Markham Civic Centre, 101 Town Centre Boulevard, from 12 noon to 4 pm.
There were reports on the society's activities over the past year, a vote on a change to the Bylaw about Quorum for Board Meetings, and the 2012-3 Board was elected.
Miriam Henriques and Janice Keil gave a conservation award to Sharon Keogh and David Acomba of Mount Ararat
Prizes were given out for work in the field of conserving native plants.
Follow the link below for the full minutes:
North American Native Plant Society
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
October 20, 2012
Canada Room, Markham Civic Centre, 101 Town Centre Blvd., Markham
Doors Open 12:00 noon
The North American Native Plant Society’s annual general meeting opened with a plant sale and refreshments. Approximately 45 members and board members mingled with award recipients.
Markham Civic Centre Native Gardens
All attendees were able to view a mounted perspective showing the native gardens that are planned for the Markham Civic Centre grounds. The gardens are located between the reflecting pool and the public walkway running parallel to Hwy. 7. Shrubs were planted this past September and hundreds of wildflowers will be added at a public planting June 8, 2013.
Outgoing President’s Speech
Outgoing president Greg Hagan welcomed everyone and briefly summarized events and occasions from the past year. He is looking forward to continuing on the board of directors as past president.
Incoming President’s Speech
Incoming president Paul LaPorte also welcomed everyone and spoke about the hopes and plans for the coming year. Paul thanked those who have volunteered to serve on this year’s board of directors.
Board of Director’s Introductions
Director Eileen Atkinson introduced the current board of directors (and photos were taken) then Janice Keil thanked outgoing directors Karen Boniface, who was present, and Gerda Wekerle, who was not. Eileen then introduced the new board members, Adam Mohamed, Joanne Fallowfield, Heidi Eisenhauer and returning board member Harold Smith (and photos were taken of the new board).
Director John Oyston explained the board’s request to change the description of what constitutes a quorum at board meetings and why a change was needed. It is currently set at 8 board members. The motion called for it to be changed to 50% of Board membership plus one. The motion was brought forward at the AGM so as to give the general membership the opportunity to vote. Motion was passed unanimously.
Director Alice Kong talked about upcoming by-law changes that NANPS and other non-profit groups have to comply with before the end of next year.
Treasurer Sue Stephenson presented the NANPS financial report for the year ending December 31, 2011 and distributed copies. (Copies also available online as per request). There was a question and answer session followed by a vote to accept the report as presented. Report was approved.
Sue also announced the hiring of Theresa Sharma to assist the treasurer and board as needed.
Garden/Restoration Award Presentation (1)
Directors Janice Keil and Miriam Henriques happily presented a NANPS award to Sister Mary Mallany from the Loretto Maryholme Spirituality Centre in Roches Point, Ontario.
Sister Mary gave a wonderful description of her work at the Loretto Maryholme Centre, complete with slide show. The dedication she and her volunteers show is inspiring. When Hwy. 404 was built, they took many hundreds of rescued native plants and re-planted them on the centre’s grounds. Their ongoing battle with invasive plants is heroic and the education and learning that takes place at the centre benefits everyone who visits. Sister Mary personally conducts classes, workshops and tours of the property. For more information go to Loretto Maryholme Spirituality Centre on line.
Markham’s Deputy Mayor Jack Heath stopped by briefly to share some exciting news with NANPS members. The City of Markham is planning to expand the newly approved national park within its borders (Rouge Park) by adding many smaller areas of green space beyond the park’s current boundaries.
The deputy mayor’s talk was followed by a half hour break during which time members were asked to complete comment cards describing what they feel NANPS does well and what needs improvement. Many cards were returned with valued input.
Garden/Restoration Award Presentation (2)
Janice and Miriam re-grouped to give a NANPS award to another worthy recipient – Dan Bissonnette, Program Coordinator for Project Pawpaw, The Naturalized Habitat Network of Essex County and Windsor, Ontario. Dan spoke very eloquently about the pawpaw and his efforts to keep it off the endangered species list in Ontario. He said very few Ontarian's are familiar with this native fruit tree. He would like to see it become so successful that the fruit could be a cash crop. Dan will give you a seedling, but you have to attend a workshop first. Dan reports that there is great interest in the project and that the workshops have been very well attended. He has just produced a soft-cover spiral-bound booklet called The Pawpaw Grower’s Manual for Ontario explaining the historical significance of the pawpaw, its characteristics, planning and planting techniques and aftercare. For more information search Project Pawpaw on line.
Director John Oyston arranges and leads at least one excursion each year for NANPS. This year he took a group on a fall tour of the Carolinian woods of south-west Ontario. John talked about visiting Backus Woods, the Jackson Gunn old growth forest and the Arthur Langford Nature Reserve. On the return trip, the group stopped in at Van Den Nest Nursery, an amazing business that specializes in Carolinian trees and shrubs.
Election of New Board of Directors
Incoming president Paul LaPorte called the new board of directors to come forward and moved for their election as the 2013 Board of Directors. The
motion was passed unanimously.
Volunteer of the Year Award
Director Alice Kong presented some long-time NANPS volunteers with the Volunteer of the Year Award – Sue Wells and Stacey Shannon. Sue and Stacey have quietly and efficiently set up and overseen refreshments for NANPS members at many events over the years, as well as making the long trek each May to pick up and deliver plants for our annual plant sale. Stacey has also served NANPS well as plant sale coordinator in the past. They are both very deserving of this award.
Paul McGaw Memorial Conservation Award (1)
Janice Keil announced that a Paul McGaw Conservation Award went to the Bronx River Alliance for the Bronx River Restoration Project in New York City. About 2,000 volunteers have worked to bring back the Bronx River from its polluted state. This is a long term project; they have had very encouraging results to date. Linda Cox, Executive Director of the Bronx River Alliance sent a thank-you video to NANPS. For more information check out Youtube video: Bronx River Restoration.
Paul McGaw Memorial Conservation Award (2)
Janice and Miriam called David Acomba and Sharon Keogh to the front to receive a Paul McGaw Conservation Award for their Catharine Parr Traill and Mount Ararat project. David and Sharon showed slides of their beautiful property on the Rice Lake Plains, reminded us of Catharine Parr Trail’s contribution to our knowledge of Canada’s native plants and inspired us all with their combination of dreams and hard work that is bearing fruit on this wonderful site. For more information check out their website at www.traill.ca .
To end the meeting, several door prizes were given out and a draw was held from the completed comment cards for a free one-year NANPS membership.
The concluding comments were made by Janice Keil who also introduced some buzz around our upcoming Speakers Series for 2013.
The meeting adjourned at 3:45 p.m..