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Meeting Minutes- January 2012

Bronx Zoo AAZK Chapter Meeting Minutes
20 January 2012

1)      Cindy opened the meeting with an overview of tonight’s agenda.
2)      Online Voting for inclusion of other WCS parks into BZAC
a.      Of the 21 BZAC members, 15 registered for online voting.  11 of them voted – 10 in favor, 1 opposed.
b.      It was proposed to accept the 15 members registered online as the total from which we can accept the vote in order to attain quorum.
                                                              i.      11 of 13 members present voted in favor of this.  3 of 13 opposed.
1.      The amendment therefore is passed, allowing keepers from the other WCS facilities to join BZAC.
3)      Calendars
a.      Cindy reported that sales are going well and we still have some calendars available.
                                                              i.      Calendars are available for purchase from AAZK officers as well as at the Zoo Center.
b.      An email broadcast will be going out 21 January 2012 to staff about the sale of the calendars at the Zoo Center.
c.       Discussed the option of putting ads in the calendar to subdue printing costs.
d.      Efforts will be made to produce a final page to add to the calendars not yet sold as Vistaprint doesn’t allow for this in their formatting.
                                                              i.      This page will include Thank You’s to those involved in the production of the calendar, an overview of the photos included in the calendar, the BZAC and AAZK logos, as well as other pertinent information.
e.      We will be using a Groupon deal to reduce calendar costs for the next round of production.
f.        The vote to approve funding an additional $164 to purchase 50 more calendars was passed with 9 of 13 members voting in favor.
4)      Travel Grant (TG)
a.      This year we will be awarding two grants, each worth $500.  These values may change in the future based on our financial situation.
b.      Deadlines for submission are April 1 and October 1. 
The TG committee will narrow these down to ≤10 finalists who will give a presentation at the monthly meeting on the 20th of these months.  The winner will then be selected.
                                                              i.      There was debate as to how the grant winner should be decided – membership decided to leave this decision up to the TG committee.
c.       Amy presented the guidelines for grant proposals
                                                              i.      It was recommended, and accepted by the membership to change the time limit for usage of the grant from 2 years down to 1 year.
                                                            ii.      The TG committee is allowed to eliminate grant finalists based on the merit of their proposal even if less than 10 proposals are submitted.
d.      The application will require a 500 word statement of purpose and a projected budget.
e.      Travel Grant Committee
                                                              i.      Responsibilities: Narrow down applicants, organize presentations of applicants for membership, collect post-trip report, award grant.
5)      Enrichment Bonanza Committee
a.      Responsibilities: Organize supplies, plan event, find out departmental/installation enrichment needs, look into possible funding options from zoo.
b.      We can hold as many as the committee is interested in hosting.  We are aiming for at least 2 this year, but hopefully more J
6)      Membership Dues
a.      The deadline for membership dues is March 20, 2012 for this year.  You must be a member of National AAZK organization to join our chapter.
b.      Membership allows you to vote on all matters, apply for the travel grant, to get discounts on certain BZAC events and merchandise, as well as other benefits.
7)      Volunteer Committee
a.      Responsibilities: To plan and organize volunteer opportunities for the membership to participate in.
b.      These outings can be a one-time event or a regularly scheduled activity.
8)      Presentation Committee
a.      Responsibilities: To plan and facilitate evenings for keepers to present their work/research, to preview all presentations for appropriateness, to plan panel discussions with management.
b.      Both the location and food will be provided by Jim Breheny.
c.       These will be open to WCS employees only.
9)      National Keeper Week Committee
a.      Cindy reviewed last year’s Keeper Week events, which included a silent auction of keeper handiworks, an evening picnic and Keeper Olympics, keeper bestowed awards, and more.
                                                              i.      This year’s events are YTBD.
b.      Responsibilities: Plan and execute all NKW activities.
10)  Bowling for Rhinos Committee
a.      Responsibilities:  Plan and hold BFR event, get sponsors and donors for additional fundraising, advertise.
11)  Barnanza
a.      We are looking to hold this event again and are holding a call for a charity to support.
                                                              i.      Charity suggestions are due by March 1.  At the March 20 meeting, those advocating a charity will present on this organization and why we should support it.  Voting to select a charity will occur at this meeting.
12)  Chopsticks for Salamanders
a.      This is a conservation initiative by Lauren Augustine (former Bronx zoo Herpetology keeper and former BZAC Treasurer).
b.      We are looking to sell stainless steel chopsticks to reduce the number of trees chopped in the Appalachian Mountains to make wooden chopsticks.  The set of sticks will be sold with a brochure explaining the mission of the project and educate public.
c.       We do not yet know the cost our chapter may incur in order to participate in this until a grant request is decided upon to help fund the project.
                                                              i.      All money from our sales will go completely towards this conservation project.
13)  Merchandise committee
a.      Dawn suggested that we add another committee whose responsibilities will be to sell BZAC merchandise to help support our chapter.
14)  Guest Speakers
a.      Sara will be in charge of organizing guest speakers to come to our meetings and talk on various topics pertaining to our field.
b.      If anyone has suggestions, please forward them to Sara (  Consider researchers at the CGC or professors.