What an unbelievable year we had with the uncertainty of the coronavirus pandemic compounded by multiple other stressors. We could not have imagined that we would still be mostly confined to our homes eight months after the shelter-in-place began. By late spring our board members began to adapt creatively to change our activities. I want to thank our Communications Committee leaders for quickly adapting our PDF Bay Leaf newsletter into a new electronic format with outstanding articles posted on our newly improved website. Our intrepid Field Trips Chair wrote detailed, illustrated Bay Leaf articles on self-guided walks. Our Programs leader watched countless Zoom meetings to learn the best way to offer virtual Programs meetings that would engage our viewers and still be interactive. Native Here Nursery volunteers worked overtime to adapt to an online ordering system. Finally, our Conservation Committee volunteers wrote comment letters and participated in virtual meetings on multiple developments that were being pushed quickly through the review process for approval.
On a more positive note, more of you can view our Programs meetings because you are not fighting traffic on weeknights and can instead watch the virtual talk from home or later on our new YouTube channel. Also, you can buy plants conveniently online and take walks in local parks on your own schedule with your Bay Leaf notes in hand.
I want to express my gratitude to all the volunteers for their assistance in adjusting our activities with the challenging conditions. I also want to thank everyone for all the help and support I have received during my two years as president. I look forward to the election of our new board officers.
Although it has been a draining year, we will welcome the return of outdoor activities when we can safely be together. Our time in nature helps us feel at peace and rejuvenates our spirits.
—Judy Schwartz, President, CNPS East Bay Chapter