This fall’s Audubon Community Nature Center annual meeting came 65 years after its founding.
Executive Director Leigh Rovegno shared highlights from the recently completed 2019-2022 strategic plan.
These included the addition of the Stephanie Frucella Education Pavilion, the Pamela A. Weston Wildlife Habitat, and new paved pathways around the nature center building that increased public access. She introduced parts of the next strategic plan and reported ACNC nature educators conducted more than 1,400 programs in the 2021-22 fiscal year.
Those present at the meeting saw a program by Kim Turner, animal care specialist, that featured Audubon’s resident bird of prey, Cricket the American Kestrel.
Rovegno welcomed new and thanked outgoing board members. She extended appreciation to Brittany Wilcox, outgoing chair, and Piper VanOrd who completed their years of service on ACNC’s board.
Continuing board members Tina Downey, chair; Dave Burlee, first vice chair; Linnea Haskin, second vice chair; Willow Fodor, secretary; Greg Lyle, treasurer; Louise Boutwell, Andrew Harrington, Elisabeth Hall, Laurie Korb, Netta Lindell, and Tim Piotrowski were joined by the newly elected Dr. Erin Pender and Dr. Eugenie Poignard.
A former fourth grade teacher in Chicago Public Schools, Pender is a general dentist and owner of Chautauqua Lake Dental. The Stow, N.Y., resident also serves on the Chautauqua County Dental Advisory Board.
Poignard is the Clinical Director of Chautauqua Physical and Occupational Therapy. She lives in Lakewood and is on the Board of Directors at the Ashville Free Library.
The Audubon Community Nature Center is located at 1600 Riverside Road, one-quarter mile east of Route 62 between Jamestown and Warren. Visit the nearly 600-acre nature preserve, check in on the live birds of prey, and hike, snowshoe or cross country ski more than five miles of trails dawn until dusk daily for free.
The three-story Nature Center building houses interactive displays, a collection of live animals including the Hellbender exhibit, and the Blue Heron Gift Shop. Visitors are welcome Mondays through Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and Sundays, 1 to 4:30 p.m. Nature Center members and SNAP/EBT cardholders have free building admission daily. Building admission is also free every Sunday for non-Nature Center members.
To learn more about Audubon and its programs, call 716-569-2345, find Audubon Community Nature Center on Facebook, or visit AudubonCNC.org.