By Mitch Lex and Allison Barszcz
On the afternoon of March 31st, a crowd of more than 90 people gathered
at the Kalamazoo Nature Center for the annual Michigan Nature
Association Members’ Meeting. Among those speaking throughout the event
was featured guest Dave Dempsey.
Author of Rise & Recovery: Michigan’s Rise as a Conservation Leader among several other books, Dempsey spoke of the importance of land protection and its role in the rise of Michigan as a current leader in conservation efforts. Dempsey also highlighted the role of the MNA and other environmental organizations throughout the state and the importance of them in protecting natural lands.
Along with Dempsey, MNA staff and board members spoke as part of the event. President Steve Kelley, Executive Director Garrett Johnson and Stewardship Coordinator Andrew Bacon all discussed the current and future workings and goals of the MNA.
Former Trustee Dave Wendling and MNA volunteer Tina Patterson announced the upcoming 60th Anniversary Odyssey, where 20 of MNA’s most prized sanctuaries will be showcased throughout much of 2012. Members were eager to join Dave and Tina on the Odyssey, purchasing Odyssey t-shirts and signing on to participate.
The meeting was also a celebration of the association’s 60th anniversary, commemorating the incredible growth and success it has seen since its beginnings in 1952. Attendees enjoyed cake and refreshments in celebration.