WFO 2021 Year-End Letter
Dear members,

Western Field Ornithologists continues to do well. Here is where we stand at the end of 2021:

Although we did not have our Reno conference, we did have a successful virtual conference in August, and we thank Jen Hajj for all of her hard work and guidance. Andy Mauro and others set up our first WFO Birdathon, which well exceeded our fund-raising target. John Schmitt did a beautiful painting of a pair of Pileated Woodpeckers that is now emblazoned on a T-shirt. The original painting will be raffled off next fall, when we hope to meet in Reno.

Four members transitioned off the board this year: Homer Hansen, Bryce Robinson, Ed Pandolfino and Chris Swarth. Dan Gibson, Bob Gill, Robin Leong, and Don Marsh joined the board. Bob and Dan have previously been on the board, Dan twice previously as vice-president. Dan is our assistant editor for Western Birds and Bob now heads up our Special Publications. Chris Swarth decided to step aside as our newsletter editor and we thank him for producing seven substantial issues which kept us informed and enlightened during the months of isolation. Thanks Chris! Judith Dunham, a life member, is our new newsletter editor and is at work in planning and producing her first issue later this winter. Suzanne Carota decided to retire as our treasurer and membership secretary, but before leaving she meticulously trained her replacement, Shaun Wilde. Thank you Suzanne! Shaun’s daughters, Fianna and Blythe, are WFO student members and the family has long been involved with WFO.

This year we re-designed the website (thanks, Bryce and Tim Brittain), a process that will continue at least into next year. Newly elected Board member, Don Marsh, now chairs our Website Committee, so please send all suggestions and comments about the website to him.

With our virtual conference and Birdathon, WFO’s finances are doing well. We anticipate being over $30,000 in the black for 2021. We had planned not to ask for donations at year’s end, until life member and patron Ron Mallory made a generous matching grant offer of $50,000 for our publications fund. Our peer-reviewed publications are the most important thing that WFO does. The Birds of Inyo County is expected to be published in 2022, and two other publications are being considered. Phil Unitt continues to ably edit Western Birds, his tenure now exceeding 35 years. Please do consider supporting Ron’s matching grant. We always want to be welcome important ornithological manuscripts.

In the meantime best holiday wishes and we hope for a return to normal in 2022, particularly in time for our 8–11 September conference in Reno.

Best wishes,
Jon Dunn and John Harris

If you would like to donate to the WFO Publications Fund and take advantage of the Ron Mallory Matching Grant, click here.