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Earth Team Coordinators' Meeting | January 2013

Quarterly Earth Team Volunteer Coordinators' Meeting Minutes - January 9, 2013

The Earth Team (ET) volunteer coordinators meeting was held at the Salina state office (SO) conference center on January 9, 2013.

Attendees were as follows:

  • Jan Klaus, State ET Coordinator
  • Area Coordinators (ACs)
    • Toni Flax (Area 1)
    • Jamie Johnson (Area 2)
    • Joyce Wade (Area 3)
    • Alex Miller (Area 4)
    • Diane Edwards (SO and Plant Materials Center [PMC])

The meeting was called to order at 10 a.m.

Jan welcomed the ACs and introduced the new ACs, Joyce Wade and Diane Edwards. Jan also presented the ET ACs with a recognition item as a thank you for our assistance throughout fiscal year (FY) 2012.

Earth Team Final Report FY 2012

  • National—19,075 volunteers; 305,564 hours
  • Central Region—7,600 volunteers; 111,750.45 hours
  • Kansas—2,550 volunteers; 19,722.25 hours
  • Value of each hour of volunteer service is $21.79 per hour

Action Items Completed:

  • All final award nominations that were submitted were judged and selections were announced. Award winning nominations were forwarded on to the National ET Office to participate in the National ET award competition. Kansas Chief’s Cup award nomination was also submitted.
  • Jan ordered recognition items which are available for distribution to recognize the ET volunteers.
  • All ET award nominations have received a letter of recognition signed by Eric Banks, State Conservationist (STC) for distribution to the nominees thanking them for their contributions to the ET program. ET award winner plaques and recognition items have been distributed for presentation.
  • An email was generated and distributed to the field offices (FOs) on reporting volunteer time for the Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network (CoCoRahs) Group.

Minutes from the September 25, 2012, meeting were reviewed and approved.

State ET Coordinator Report—Jan Klaus

  • Made final selections for ET recognition items and placed order with 4IMPRINT.
  • Compiled all award nominations with the appropriate cover sheet and sent nominations to SO committee.
  • Ordered 2012 ET award plaques.
  • Prepared letters for award winners and nominees for STC’s signature.
  • Set schedule for FY 2013 meetings.
  • Worked with State Administrative Officer (SAO) and area 3 to hire new coordinators for SO and area 3.
  • December 5—participated in the video conference on “Engaging Volunteers in Peoples’ Gardens.”
  • December 13—participated in the National Office quarterly teleconference.
  • January 5—provided new coordinator training to Joyce Wade at the Hutchinson area office (AO).
  • Prepared the first quarter reports for the meeting.
  • Answered questions and requests from coordinators and the National Office on an as-needed basis.

Area Coordinator Reports

Area 1—Toni Flax
  • Forwarded email about CoCoRHAS hours to be counted.
  • Emailed a reminder about getting end-of-year hours in tracking system.
  • Sent email to supervisory district conservationists (SDCs) asking if they wanted end-of-year reports for their management units; then responded to their request.
  • Answered several questions on the tracking system and counting hours.
  • Sent Jan updates on awards nominations.
  • Made contact with Keith Kisner about Bernadette Luncsford’s award.
  • File reviews for Hill City, Stockton, and Osborne FOs.
  • Awards information gathered and worked with Jan on what recognition items went where and when they were presented.
  • Answered questions on what hours could be counted from several counties.
  • Listened in on the National quarterly teleconference.
  • Did file review for Ness City, Jetmore, and Dighton FOs and helped set up folders.
  • Assisted Ashley Swank, Hodgeman County District Manager, with setup in system and helped her get familiar with the tracking system.
  • Sent email reminder for everyone to get 1st quarter hour in tracking system.
Area 2—Jamie Johnson
  • Assisted and responded to any questions from the FOs pertaining to the ET program or the ET tracking system.
  • Participated in the National ET teleconference on 12/13/12.
  • Emailed all district conservationists (DCs) and district managers information on potential ET hours from Banker’s tour, annual meetings, etc.
  • Participated in an ET teleconference with Jan regarding 2012 ET award nominations and selected winners.
  • Jan has been following up with all offices regarding fingerprint charts and background investigation for Hugoton Management Unit volunteer.
  • Distributed all recognition items and letters for 2012 ET award nominations and winners.
  • Plan to recognize the Liberal FO for their 2012 FO award nomination at the next DC meeting.
  • Emailed Jan a 2012 recognition item distribution report.
  • Checked and corrected the ET tracking system for volunteer activities which were inadvertently captured under “no activity.”
  • Checked ET tracking system for duplicate entries.
  • Emailed all offices to remind them to enter hours into the database signifying the end of the 1st quarter.
Area 4—Alex Miller
  • Presented Roxann Maike with a nomination letter and ET keepsake at the Alma FO.
  • Sent the Topeka FO staff a copy of their nomination letter and keepsakes for their nomination.
  • Mailed Burl Penney his nomination letter and some keepsakes for his individual award nomination.
  • Sent the Lyndon FO keepsakes that they could hand out to their CoCoRahs volunteers.
  • Coordinated with Roberta Spencer of the Jackson County Conservation District concerning the presentation of their Kansas Association of Conservation Districts (KACD) plaque.
  • Congratulated Geary County Conservation District Manager on winning the ET District Manager award. A plaque was presented to her at the KACD convention.
  • Participated in December 13th National quarterly ET coordinator meeting.
  • Congratulated the Jackson County Conservation District for winning the National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) award.
  • Routinely monitored volunteer tracking system and answered questions from office administrators.
  • Sent out reminder email for Area 4 offices to report their hours for the 1st quarter.
  • Emailed volunteer tracker office administrators reminding them to delete expired one-time groups.

Earth Team 1st Quarter Report

  • Area 1—170 volunteers; 696.5 hours
  • Area 2—86 volunteers; 452.25 hours
  • Area 3—27 volunteers; 270 hours
  • Area 4—127 volunteers; 728.5 hours
  • State Office/PMC—1 volunteer; 9 hours

Apprentice Program Report by Area

  • Area 1—2
  • Area 2—none
  • Area 3—1
  • Area 4—none
  • State Office/PMC—none

New Action Items

  • Jan will ask to be on the agenda for the upcoming management team meeting in February 2013, to speak to the new Assistant State Conservationist for Field Operations (ASTC-FO) regarding the ET program.
  • Each coordinator should think about someone in their area that would make a good ET “cheerleader” to speak at an upcoming DC meeting.
  • Post the state ET award winners to the Kansas Web site after the National ET award selections have been announced.
  • A “Did you Know” email will be developed covering Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy (WRAPS), CoCoRahs, Annual Meeting, and ET SharePoint; Alex will develop information on WRAPS, Jamie will focus on CoCoRahs and Annual Meeting, Jan will develop information on utilizing the ET SharePoint.
  • Jan will review and update the “Notes for Supervisors” handout on the Apprentice Program.
  • Jamie will update the Apprentice signup sheet poster.
  • Direct FOs’ attention to the National ET Web site, National ET Sharepoint, and National ET Business Plan.
  • Jan will work with Sheila to post ET information on Twitter.
  • Develop 2013 ET Business Plan.
  • Jan will train the other office assistants on reviewing ET file folders and ET tracking system during an Administrative and Management Review.
  • ET area volunteer coordinators will send their list of recognition items distributed in FY 2012 to Jan.

Old Business

  • Reviewed the results of the internal national survey regarding the ET program
  • The group discussed the notes from the first quarter national teleconference; Also reviewed the national NRCS ET communications plan.
  • Jan distributed correspondence on eligible volunteer hour guidance for review and discussion.
  • The group viewed the video on “Engaging Volunteers.”

New Business

  • A few changes will be made during development of the FY 2013 Kansas ET Business Plan.
  • Articles submitted to the National ET Volunteer Showcase will be developed and routed to Diane and Jan for review. Jan will forward the final product to the National Office for publication.
  • The group discussed potentially changing the location of quarterly meetings due to the long distance Area 1 has to travel. The 2nd quarter meeting will be held in Hutchinson.
  • Submit any National Volunteer Week ideas to Jan. She will forward them to the National Office.
  • The group will highlight a few possible scenarios in which the activity could be captured as eligible ET hours. This will be distributed through email as a “Did you Know” fact sheet.

Meeting adjourned at 3 p.m.

Our next meeting will be held on April 9, 2013, in the Hutchinson AO conference room beginning at 10 a.m.