Minutes from February 19, 2015 Business Meeting

Tennessee Chapter of the American Fisheries Society

Business Meeting Minutes

Tennessee Aquarium

Chattanooga, Tennessee

February 19, 2015


Meeting was called to order by Travis Scott, chapter president. A quorum was established and the agenda was motioned to be approved. Copies of the 2014 business meeting minutes were provided. The minutes were motioned and approved. Travis introduced Chapter officers and welcomed two guests, Bobby Wilson, Chief of TWRA’s Fisheries Division and, Dennis Riecke, SDAFS, president. Dennis briefed the membership on recent Southern Division activities. There will be a concerted effort to have a SDAFS officer at each member chapter’s annual meeting. The Procedure Manual is in the process of being reviewed and updated. He noted that Alabama is the only state that doesn’t have a state-wide AFS Chapter and the Society is working to remedy the situation. The SDAFS would like to host all chapters and subunits on their web site, which will be updated soon. Dennis reflected that all chapters with websites need to check all photo sources as they may hold a copyright and, if used without permission, can be sued. He discussed the advantages of being a member of the Society and asked that the TN Chapter encourage all members to become members of AFS. The SDAFS is asking all of its Chapters to do one new thing for a fishery this year (ex. stream clean up; education event).

Old Business

President Report

Travis Scott gave the report for the executive committee. All necessary reports were filed with the SDAFS as well as the parent chapter of AFS. The EXCOM used FreeConferenceCall.com for all of the EXCOM meetings. This fall, Pat Black, with the assistance of Jim Parham, passed on the duties to update and maintain the TN chapter website at the new webpage on the SDAFS website to Kathlina Alford. Travis purchased an iPad Mini to provide a central location to house documents which will assist with the transition of incoming officers each year. It will also allow our Chapter to accept credit card payments for registration and the purchase of auction items. This is provided by an account with Square Marketplace for a small fee. In the future, we could have items for sale (Chapter t-shirts) on line year around.

Travis represented the chapter at the SDAFS meeting in Savannah, GA and at the AFS National meeting in Quebec City, Canada.

President-Elect Report

Kathlina Alford made the arrangements for the meeting location at the Tennessee Aquarium. The Aquarium provided the meeting room for free. She anticipates the cost of the meeting to be about $3500 and we had received $3700 in registrations as of the 19th. A profit from this meeting is expected. John Hammonds, Outreach Coordinator, and Kathlina developed a Facebook page for TNAFS and are sharing weekly announcements, a fish of the week, and updates with photos on fisheries news from across the state. She asked that the membership consider a meeting date for next year to be in January or early February. The SDAFS meeting will be the 3rd week of February and March is the time frame for many universities’ Spring Break.

Past President Report

Jim Parham gave an update on the Tennessee Conservation Funding Initiative. The state-wide survey was completed and preliminary results show that citizens want a stable funding source for conservation and that protection of natural resources is important to citizens of Tennessee. The question is how to pay for it, official funds, a tax increase or something other. This may be a 15-year project and this is the 6th year.

Secretary/Treasurer Report

TNAFS chapter had an account balance as on February 18th of $34,464.59. This includes the $10,000 earmarked for investment. Our Chapter provided $ 1,000.00 for the Tennessee Conservation Funding Initiative and provided $500 to the Georgia Chapter hosting the 2015 SDAFS meeting.

Kathlina Alford will continue on as the Website/Historian Chairman, taking over from Pat Black. Jim Parham helped to transition the Chapter website to the SDAFS web page @ WordPress. Pat maintained, updated and made many improvements to the Chapter website for 11 years. Our thanks for all of your dedication!

Richard Strange has most graciously agreed to continue as chairman of the Newsletter Committee. The chapter members need to send information, photos on new projects and updates on continuing projects during the year ahead.

John Hammonds will continue as the chairman of the Outreach Committee. The goal is to make the public aware of TNAFS, who we are and what we do. With the creation of a Facebook page, the outreach has begun! Members please visit this site weekly and pass on any ideas to John and Kathlina that may enhance or improve the site and its contents.


Shawn Settle, representing APSU, stated that they have $350 in their bank account and have t-shirts to sell to raise money for their activities. This fall they helped sponsor a Safe Trick or Treating day on campus, they conducted a river clean-up project and helped USFWS conduct a “Wet, Wild and Wacky Critter Day” at Land Between the Lakes.

Cole Harty, president of TTUSFA, reports that they have $2000 in their bank account. The subunit paid for several of their students to attend the SDAFS meeting in Savannah, GA. They are in the planning stages for a Fish Fry to raise money for their annual Kids Fishing Derby. Students helped with the annual Lake Sturgeon monitoring project and, have teamed up with Project Healing Waters to help disabled veterans learn to fish. Additional activities are in planning stages.

Dr. Brian Alford, the faculty advisor of the UTK Chapter of the Student Wildlife and Fisheries Society (WFS), reported that they have 90 student members. To raise funds, the subunit had their Annual Game Dinner with live and silent auctions, raising approximately $6000. Students assisted with the fall Lake Sturgeon monitoring project and the Pigeon River Recovery Project. The WFS funded student attendance at both the SDAFS and SEAFWA meetings in 2014.

Meeting Announcements

  • 145th Annual AFS Meeting, Portland OR, August 16-20, 2015
  • SEAFWA Annual Meeting, Asheville, NC, November 1-5, 2015
  • AFS Southern Division Meeting, Wheeling, WV, 2016

New Business

Many awards were presented to very deserving individuals:

Friends of Fisheries Awards – Trout Unlimited Tennessee Council

Lifetime Achievement Award – Dave Rizzuto, Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency

Outstanding Fisheries Scientist Award – Anna George, Tennessee Aquarium Conservation Institute

Best Student Presentation – Zachary Wolf, APSU, 1st Place and Shawn Settle, APSU, 2nd Place

Past-President Award – Jim Parham, presented by Travis Scott

AFS National has a financial advising service under contract to help chapters wishing to set up investment plans. Their investments have increased since the recession and are professionally managed by the AXA Company. Based on the information provided by AFS and researched by Travis Scott and Joyce Coombs, a motion was passed unanimously to invest our $10,000 with the AFS program after we learn where the money is invested. Investment interest will be used to support a $1,500 Student Scholarship Fund to support student travel to AFS meetings. All T-shirt sales will go toward the scholarship fund. The EXCOM will determine the application process for awarding deserving students.

Dr. Brian Alford, Chair of the SDAFS Warm Water Streams Committee, is requesting donations to continue their support for the Jimmy Pigg Memorial Award for students. The committee is requesting donations from all Southeastern chapters in the amount of $100-200 dollars. A motion was made to provide funding in the amount of $200.00 for the Jimmy Pigg Memorial Award. It was seconded and passed by a unanimous vote.

Chris Morton, TWRA, was nominated and elected unanimously as our President-elect. Tim Churchill was nominated and elected unanimously as our Secretary/ Treasurer. Congratulations to both!

The Tennessee Chapter of AFS conducted a silent auction to raise funds for youth fishing events state wide. Thanks to generous donations from multiple companies (Loki Nets, Smith-Root, Aquatic Resource Mgmt., Memphis Zoo, Nashville Predators, Bass Pro, Cabela’s & many more) and from our own members, we raised $916.

The meeting was attended by 64 paid registrants, of which 5 didn’t attend. Fourteen presentations were given and 3 posters were presented.

Travis Scott passed the gavel to Kathlina Alford as the incoming president. Travis thanked everyone for allowing him to serve as our TN Chapter President for this past year. He enjoyed the experience and looks forward to another successful year for our Chapter. Travis Scott thanks everyone over the past year with their help in bringing together a great Chapter meeting. Meeting adjourned @ 6:00 PM.