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August Member e-news 2018

Thursday, August 30, 2018   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Laura Reilly


Chicago Wilderness Alliance



Executive Council Update

The Executive Council meeting held at CMAP on July 18th had 35 members in attendance and opened with remembrance and a moment of silence for long-standing CW member, Jack Broughton. We are grateful for his years of dedication and service.

At the halfway point of 2018, we have made great strides towards establishing a reserve in the operating budget. Treasurer Jim Jerozal led an informative and productive discussion of the fiscal year 2019 draft budget. It was recommended that the FY 2019 budget be revised before the October Executive Council meeting to reflect a reserve of six months of standard operating expenses as opposed to the flat 25% amount.

The new CW Coordinator, Laura Reilly, was introduced to and welcomed by the Executive Council. For the remainder of 2018 she is budgeted for 30 hours per week to assist the CW Alliance with administrative duties, including oversight of the Membership Portal, providing membership support and outreach, and assisting working groups/teams with meeting scheduling and correspondence.In 2019, it will be 40 hours per week as the Visioning process gets underway.

Lynda Lancaster and Lynne Westphal were approved to Co-Chair the Nominations & Elections Committee for the next round of elections for the Steering Committee. Council members are encouraged to assist with recruiting people interested in running. They will be drafting a description of what each position and the time commitment for each in order to facilitate that process.

The Steering Committee proposed staggering elections in order to prevent complete turnover.The proposed timeline for 2018 elections is:

  • July through September: Get nominations
  • October: Slate accepted by Executive Council
  • November: Mail ballots
  • December: Results tabulated and announced
  • January 2019: New members join Steering Committee

Moving forward, the Executive Council seeks to create an election process that is welcoming for newcomers interested in becoming involved with either the Steering Committee or CW in general.

The Policies & Procedures document was presented for review and is ready for refinement. The Steering Committee proposed a formal review by an attorney using funds donated from the Donnelly Foundation. The goal is to have the RFP presented to the Executive Council for discussion at the October meeting.

Finally, congratulations to John Rogner on his retirement from U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service! John has been a tireless leader on behalf of Chicago Wilderness since its inception. We wish him the BEST in his retirement and hope that he continues his invaluable work on behalf of CW.

Save the date: Executive Council Meeting onOctober 17.



Oak Ecosystems

The Oak Ecosystem Recovery Working Group is organizing a meeting with partners in Southeastern Wisconsin on August 24 to explore oak recovery collaboration opportunities in this part of the region. The meeting is being hosted by The Nature Conservancy at their Chapman Hills Tract of Crooked Creek Preserve near East Troy, Wisconsin. Formore information, contact Chris Mulvaney

Accreditation & Award Programs

Applications for both the Excellence in Ecological Restoration and Force of Nature Awards will be accepted from January 7, 2019 through March 1, 2019.

Excellence in Ecological Restoration Awards
The Commission needs one additional member and is seeking volunteers to join in October.The time commitment for this position is approximately 10-15 hours over 4-5 months. Contact Ralph Schultz atrschultz@fpdwc.orgfor more information.

Force of Nature Awards
Volunteers are needed for evaluating these proposals. The time commitment is estimated at 15 hours. The nomination process is a great opportunity to learn about the amazing conservation work being done in our region. Contact Cherie Fisher atcherielfisher@fs.fed.usfor more information.

Government Relations

The Government Relations Committee plans to identify and evaluate relevant policy engagement opportunities for CW across all major initiatives. Michelle Uting was approved as the Co-Chair of the Government Relations Committee. The Committee is also looking for new members to join. Contact Susan Donovan atsdonovan@tnc.orgor join the committee via the CW websitefor more details.

A Policy Action Request Form has been developed for members to alert the Government Relations Committee to upcoming issues.The Committee is making some changes based on feedback received at the July Executive Council meeting and will be sharing the updated process on the CW website soon. Look for updates in future monthly e-newsletters.

Priority Species: Smooth Green Snake, Bobolink, and Henslow’s Sparrow

Daniel Suarez gave a quick update on Allison Sacerdote-Velat’s (Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum) work on captive breeding and release program activities for the smooth green snake in Lake and DuPage counties. Bobolink and Henslow’s Sparrow are included in the forthcoming State of the Grasslands Report, a collaborative effort by the CW Grassland Bird Task Force. The report, for the first time, will quantify grassland acres and their management regimes across six CW counties in an effort to better coordinate landscape-level grassland management.


Education Committee

Upcoming Round Tables:

Making Nature Accessible for All
August 23, 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Little Red School House
9800 Willow Springs Rd.,Willow Springs

NGSS, Bridging the Gap between Formal and Non-formal
October 25, 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Elgin High School

Community News

Hummingbird Fest & Nature Celebration
August 18, 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Forest Preserve District of Will County's Plum Creek Nature Center
27064 S. Dutton Rd, Beecher

The Forest Preserve District of Will County will host a free, all ages “Hummingbird Fest & Nature Celebration” from 1-5 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 18, at Plum Creek Nature Center. Sign up to view hummingbird banding or take part in a variety of other activities including: monarch, bee and flower talks; guided tree climbing; bike trail rides; face painting; art vendors and exhibitors; and a Lego creation center. Dress in your best winged costume as part of the event’s festivities. VisitReconnectWithNature.orgfor details or contact us 708-946-2216.


REMINDER!E-news Submittals

Do you love this newsletter? It’s easy to keep it going! Just remember to submit your committee updates, events and other newsNO LATER THAN the second Friday of each month. Submit news updates Under the News & Events drop down menu, select "Submit Program Updates" to access the easy-to-use form. Submit bullet points or a rough draft if that’s all you have time to do. The Communications Committee will be happy to work with you to develop a final report.

Submit Your Articles and Photos to Chicago Wilderness e-news!
Are you interested in submitting a conservation-related article or photo to Chicago Wilderness for publication? Contact us atCWCommunicationsTF@gmail.comfor more information.

Volunteers Wanted

The Chicago Wilderness Communications team is seeking volunteers with community engagement or communications experience. For more information, please send an email


If you are not yet involved in the work of Chicago Wilderness but are eager to lend a helping hand, please contact one of the team leaders listed below:

Beyond the Choir
Jo-Elle Mogerman


Climate Education and Engagement
Susan Ask


Communications Working Group
Elizabeth S. Kessler


Education/Next Generation of Conservation Leaders/
Leave No Child Inside
Alison Paul


Government Relations
Susan Donovan


Natural Resources Management
Rebecca Collings


Priority Plants and Fungi
Greg M. Mueller

Climate Action
Abigail Derby Lewis


Commission on Excellence in Ecological Restoration
Ralph Schultz


Corporate Council
James Jerozal


Force of Nature Awards
Cherie LeBlanc Fisher


Lynn Boerman


Oak Ecosystems
Chris Mulvaney


Wildlife Committee
Gary Glowacki



On behalf of the Chicago Wilderness Steering Committee, we would like to express our gratitude to you for generously giving of your time, talents and resources.


Arnold Randall, Chair
Forest Preserve District of Cook County

Elizabeth S. Kessler, Vice-Chair
McHenry County Conservation District

James J. Jerozal, Jr., Treasurer
Nicor Gas/Corporate Council

Danae Ehren, Executive Secretary
Tallgrass Restoration, LLC

At-Large Members of the 2018 Steering Committee
Lynn Boerman, Illinois Department of Natural Resources
Kris Krouse, Shirley Heinze Land Trust
Jo-Elle Mogerman, Shedd Aquarium
Alison Paul, Field Museum
Daniel Suarez, Audubon Great Lakes


Paying Membership Dues:

1. log in
2. click "member portal" in the top banner
3. under Member Login - sign in with your portal username and password
4. go to the "my profile" green box on the right-hand side of the screen and click "Membership Information"
5. under Membership Information you can view invoices/transactions paid or unpaid.
6. to pay - click "the credit card icon" and complete the form "Update Payment & Billing Information"

Questions regarding dues payment(s), pledge(s) and invoice(s), should be directed to Jack Bittner, accountant supporting Jim Jerozal at Nicor Gas.Phone: 630/388-3774


is dedicated to the
of the natural communities of the Chicago region through fostering theircompatibility with the human communities whose lives they enrich.

~ Chicago Wilderness ~
The First Two Years: A Progress Report (1996-1998)


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