From the President
would like to devote my column in this issue to the committee chairs of the ARS, who they are and what they do. It is the responsibility of the president of the Society to appoint the chairmen of all committees. The duties of the committees are established by the Board and these duties are detailed in the Policies of the Board (P.O.B. 9.0). At the present time there are twenty-three committees. (Note: You will find a complete listing of all committees of the ARS, committee chairs and a description of the responsibilities of all committees by going to the website: www.arsoffice.org. You will need the proper user name and password to access this information. If you do not have this password see your chapter president.)
Your president and the two vice-presidents share the responsibility for the consultation, guidance and liaison between these committees and the Board of Directors of the ARS. Space does not allow a listing and description of each of the committees so I will select a few that have been notably active during this past year.
BUDGET AND FINANCE COMMITTEE: (Ted Stecki, chair). The B & F Committee is responsible for the proposal and oversight of all financial accounts of the Society including the recommended budget for the ensuing year and shall be prepared to advise the Board any time during the year in case unexpected financial situations develop and shall report to the Board upon completion of the audit or review of the Society accounts.
BY-LAWS AND POLICIES: (Gordon Wylie, chair). This very important committee is responsible for the proper wording and presentation to the Board of all proposed changes in the by-laws or policies to improve the governance of the services of the Society to its members.
ELECTRONIC MEDIA COMMITTEE: (Dick Gustafson, chair). The committee is responsible for the creation, maintenance and updating of the Society homepage of the world wide web. This committee works closely with the executive director (Dee Daneri), the chair of the Publicity Committee (Jerry Reynolds), and the Electronic Newsletter Committee (Betty Spady, chair) and other appropriate sources in placing information on our websites. This committee has been extremely busy this past year in providing a smooth transition as the ARS is now its own webmaster (including Bob Weissman, Don Smart, Chuck Briggs, and Dick Brooks).
ELECTRONIC NEWSLETTER: (Betty Spady, chair). This committee solicits information from chapter newsletters and other sources, edits for publication on a Society website in a section entitled "Rhododendron and Azalea News." This website keeps members up to date on events and happenings within the Society.
SEED EXCHANGE: (John Nicollela, chair). The primary function of the Seed Exchange is to provide for the collection and distribution of seed to the ARS membership. Net income realized from the sale of seeds shall be used to benefit the exchange by contributions to seed collecting expeditions, procurement of seed from other sources and for support of public gardens and arboreta that feature rhododendrons and have relevance to the Seed Exchange. The enormity of the task of collecting, cataloging, labeling, packaging and distributing of this seed is overwhelming but successfully accomplished by the Seed Exchange Committee.
REGISTRAR OF PLANT NAMES: (Jay Murray, chair). This critical committee acts as liaison with the Royal Horticultural Society in its role as International Registration Authority for the genus Rhododendron. Registration materials are maintained here, registration tasks are formalized, and proper descriptions are prepared.
MEMBERSHIP/PUBLICITY: (Mike Stewart, Jerry Reynolds, chairs). Recruiting new members and a broad public outreach program create difficult challenges for these two energetic gentlemen who have created a master scheme to introduce us to the public in the coming year.
PUBLIC EDUCATION: (Wayne Mezitt, Ed Reiley, co-chairs). It will take three years for the journal to cover the outstanding results that came from last years Proven Performers project, organized by these dedicated volunteers. We all owe a debt of gratitude to these volunteers and all of the other members of the ARS who voluntarily give so willingly of their time and energy to keep our chapters and the ARS the healthy, energetic organization that it is today.