Five Things to Know

September 10, 2020


1 – Fire

Fire and smoke and devastation are on our minds. Remember to take care of yourself and your family first, otherwise you won't be in a position to help others. And helping others is what we do. It is in our DNA. The help you give does make a difference. Please keep us informed as you learn about conservation community members who have been affected.

2 – WACD Board meeting next week

We invite you to attend the September 15th meeting of the WACD Board of Directors. Details are available on the WACD website. The Board held a work session on September 8th to discuss some larger topics in preparation for the Board meeting on the 15th.

3 – Annual meeting update

3.1 Content The content team is zeroing in on topics. It probably goes without saying that we can't cover everything, but we want to touch on the topics that are of wide interest and importance.

3.2 Pricing Pricing is close to being set. It looks like $50 per person or $150 per conservation district. The $150 flat rate would cover all board supervisors, associate supervisors, and employees of a district so it's a great deal. When you consider that this year you are not spending money on travel, hotel, and restaurant meals, this becomes a truly great deal. Our goals are simple: cover our costs and increase participation. We think that this pricing scheme will allow us to meet both goals.

3.3 Zoom trainings Don't forget that we have two standing time slots for you to practice your Zoom skills. Tom Salzer will be available from 3 pm to 4:30 pm on Mondays. Ryan Baye will be available from 9:30 am to 11 am on Fridays. We'll maintain this schedule through September and into October. If you need to practice at a different time, please contact us. We will both be using the same link for these practice sessions: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/2466479813

4 – Resolutions and Area Directors

As your district writes resolutions this year, please consider reaching out to your Area Directors. They can help support your efforts to write a strong resolution and connect you with others who might be focusing on the same topic. So far, we are aware of a resolution about conservation district dues, one on diversity, equity, and inclusion, and one on WACD shared services. And since it was tabled last year until this year, we'll also see the return of a resolution on conservation district elections.

5 – Final public comment Friday for WDFW strategic plan

From the WDFW Strategic Planning Team (Jeff Davis, Carrie McCausland, Lynn Helbrecht, Rob Geddis, and Kevin Wharton): Thank you to the 550+ members of the general public, 70+ stakeholders, and 900 people on social media who helped us to modify our initial framework to move forward four the strategic focus areas and 42 action items. Your participation is helping us to better understand how the agency needs to change the way it serves Washington residents to meet the realities brought by growing populations, a changing climate, and shifting public values and expectations. This Friday, the Fish and Wildlife Commission will take public comment on a final draft of the WDFW 25-Year Strategic Plan as a part of their online September commission meeting. The commission meeting agenda is available online. The public is invited to review the revised draft.

Care to help Wade Troutman, Foster Creek CD supervisor?

The Pearl Hill fire ravaged Wade Troutman's ranch on September 7, 2020. He lost his house, ranch, and nearly all of his possessions. Four generations of his family have worked the land and in less than four hours, it was gone.
The immediate needs for Wade and Jane are to replace basic necessities and to provide temporary housing to get through the next few weeks and months. Wade has been a dedicated supervisor of the Foster Creek Conservation District and a leader in our conservation community for 39 years. Any donation will be deeply appreciated.

Executive Corner

Dear [subscriber:firstname | default:reader],

You would have to be living under a rock to not know that the West Coast is on fire. With friends and associates in California, Oregon, and Washington, I am feeling deep concern and worry for many people in all three states (and in Nevada, Idaho, Colorado, and beyond, but that is another story for another time).

In the links section of this 5 Things newsletter, I'm going to summarize some links about fire but I'm not going to share all the links I collected during the week. When I look at my long list of links collected from communities at all points of the compass, I feel overwhelmed by the flood of tragic news, over and over, every day, which leads me to...

Beware doomscrolling!

Here is a new term for you: doomscrolling.

Psychologists say habitual scrolling through bad news, even when it's upsetting or depressing, is hurting you mentally and physically. - KING5 News

We are hard-wired to focus on negative news. It pushes us into "fight or flight" syndrome, something our species learned eons ago when faced with imminent danger. And then we want more, so we keep scrolling, hoping to find the answers we are seeking.

A healthier response might be to seek ways to shift out of the flight or flight zone. Turn off the news or set a designated amount of time to look at news and then cut if off. Consider meditation and other mindfulness practices to help you regain your center. Work on crafts or take up a new hobby.

Exercise can be important. Exercise can help treat mild to moderate depression so go do something. Take a walk, ride a bike, jog, chop some firewood, wash the car, weed the garden.

Try some healthier recipes as a way to refocus on your own well being instead of dwelling on bad news. Connect with your family and friends about something other than the news.

Give some time and energy to others. Volunteer, donate.

To the world, you may be one person, but to one person you may be the world. - Unknown

I don't mean to sound preachy but here's the thing: if I'm feeling the emotional impact of these tragic circumstances, I imagine that others may be feeling the same. In our conservation family we do care about each other. You are important. We are all important.

Maybe you feel perfectly fine despite the information coming at us from all directions. If that is the case, then please consider that those around you may not be feeling as safe and grounded as you feel. Consider becoming a supportive resource for them. Reach out and check in. Let them know you care. There is no better time than right now.

The simple act of caring is heroic. - Edward Albert
Tom Salzer, Executive Director

Help us test a support system

We are testing Freshdesk as a tool to help us better coordinate our member support. It's easy to help us test: just send a note to us at support@wadistricts.freshdesk.com. Alternatively, visit the portal at https://wadistricts.freshdesk.com/ and click New Support Ticket.

More from the WACD Plant Materials Center...

Busy busy! – We'll have an update for you next week!

Shop Amazon Smile to Support WCS

Support the Washington Conservation Society by becoming a member, donating, or purchasing goods through Amazon Smile. Amazon Smile is a website operated by Amazon with the same products, prices, and shopping features as on Amazon.com. The difference is that when you shop on Amazon mile, the Amazon Smile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price of eligible products to the charitable organization of your choice.

More from the WACD Executive Office...

Area Association meetings – The basic list of dates for fall meetings of area associations is posted on the Our Area Associations page in the WACD website.

WACD annual awards – WACD’s Annual Awards Program is now available. Please nominate an outstanding member of Washington State’s conservation community who deserves recognition. Nominations are due to Lori McLaughlin by October 30th and winners will be announced in coordination with the WACD annual conference.

Links to what we are reading

Below are links to interesting items we are reading. Disclaimer: inclusion of these links in this newsletter do not imply official WACD support or endorsement of particular positions or information. Some news sources may be behind paywalls.

Fire - General / Regional
Fire - Washington
Fire - Oregon

Partners and Publications

Partners and Associations (suggestions welcome)
Resources and Publications

WACD hears you and is here for you!

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