What's New From the Board Meetings?
Esther Berry, Aberdeen, WA.
There had been some concern that the individual member may not be adequately informed about the activities of the Society at the national level. This report on the recent meeting of the Board of Directors, which was held in Washington D. C. on October 28, is intended to remedy that situation.
The Board had the very pleasant task of welcoming the new Willamette Chapter into the Society. This new chapter is centered around Salem, Oregon, and it starts out with 40 charter members.
Top billing on the agenda went to the Ad Hoc committee under the direction of Frank West. This committee was formed to study organizational problems of the national society and prepare a specific proposal for the Board. This proposal, approved by the Board, is to reorganize the governing body so that directors would have the additional responsibility of aiding in the selection of members to serve on the standing committees and of working with these committees to facilitate their activities. The Board reaffirmed it's goal of establishing a permanent national headquarters with an Executive Director. Many important details remain to be worked out but, hopefully, these deliberations will be concluded at the next meeting of the Board in San Francisco February 17, 1979.
Reports from our standing committee indicate a high level of activity; Kay Ogle reports that the Seed Exchange is making money; Marthaan Mayer reports that the availability of pollen is improving; Ed Egan, our Editor, reports that he is happy in his work; Janet Binford, our membership chairman, is searching for a better membership application form at a lower cost; Jack Evans reports that we have firm commitments for our annual meetings for the next eight years! Ed Parker, our Registrar, is registering at such a rate that the English are apprehensive; George Ring is striving to improve our ratings system. Plans are afoot to train judges and adopt standard procedures for our shows. The slide library offers a variety of good programs. Our plant awards system has been improved to provide a regional designation for our awards but more does need to be done about moving eligible plants up through the awards system.
Our publication efforts have not done so well but things are looking up. Several important publications are now under consideration and Dr. J. H. Clarke reports that although there have been additional delays in the preparation of the handbook, American Hybrids, it should be ready by early summer. The really good news is that the translation of the Chinese Species of Rhododendron is now under way. This translation is being sponsored by the Species Foundation with the cooperation of the Research Foundation.
Also, the Board responded favorably to a proposal that work should begin upon a western corollary to the eastern book, "Hybrids & Hybridizers", which has been so well received. The western version would document the history and the present status of rhododendron hybridizing on the west coast, also dealing with some of the major collections of both hybrids and species.
There has been such keen interest in a revision of Frederick Lee's "Azalea Book" that Dr. Kehr was requested to explore the possibility that the society might complete the revision already begun by David Leach with the intention of reprinting this important book.