I first opened a bee hive 35 years ago and was instantly hooked! My interest led me to graduate school here at CU where I studied behavior and genetics, to the USDA Bee Lab in Texas and Mexico working on Africanized bees, swarm trapping, varroa and tracheal mites, to Brazil working with subsistence beekeepers, to many other places in between, and finally back to Colorado.
I’m a founding member, past president, and vice president of the Mile Hive Bee Club in Denver, and serve on the board of the Colorado State Beekeepers Ass’n and maintain information on their website. I’m partway through a three year term as the beekeeping industry’s representative on the Colorado Department of Agriculture, Pesticide Advisory Committee. I teach beekeeping classes, mentor many other beekeepers electronically and in person and give talks to beekeeping associations. I stay current on information by reading scientific and trade journals, attending Colorado, national, and international meetings and conferences, and participating in international listservs. I’m good at sorting through and evaluating the confusing maze of information (especially the internet) to bring you the best and most reliable. I’m well versed in bee biology, nutrition, disease, development, social behavior, hive organization, genetics, anatomy, pollination, management, hive types, and native bees.
Here are some plans for the future of BCBA:
- I spear-headed the BCBA hive tours in 2018 and led one in Boulder. (Thanks, Don!)I plan to expand these this year.
- Work on eliminating the divisiveness and acrimony that has plagued our organization.
- Continue to help coordinate the National Western Stock Show bee exhibit and involve more local clubs.
- I’ve been the bee wrangler for the observation hive.
- I’ve updated the design to be more supportive for the bees, avoiding the piles of dead seen in the past.
- I’ve introduced online signup for volunteers to make it simple and easy not only for BCBA, but for others as well. Moving from Doodle to SignUpGenius allows me to communicate with volunteers and them to communicate with each other. (Thanks Dawn and Jo!)
- Elicited the cooperation of other clubs, who fill between ¾ an ⅔ of the volunteer slots: HBC, BBC, MHBC, DB, BAB, SEBC, WBC, TBC,
- Worked with past and present board members to update the display- It looks pretty snazzy now (thanks Donna)!
- Continue to promote our presence at the Boulder County Fair, where we interact with the people in our own community (thanks, Dawn!).
- Continue to be a part of 4H beekeeping. (Thanks Beth and Owen!) They now have a hive I won at the CSBA Winter Meeting.
- Continue to expand our meeting schedule beyond the Feb/Mar schedule to bring more information and support to our changing membership.
- Even so, our meetings cover only the basics. I’d like to add meetings and squeeze in more advanced topics to appeal to our increasingly successful members and also to have fun and opportunities to socialize.
- Introduce an informal round table for the first 30 min of each meeting where beginners can ask questions.
- I think good neighbor beekeeping is becoming increasingly important with the burgeoning population of suburban beehives. Boulder currently has no bee laws and it would be nice to keep it that way because they can be unnecessarily burdensome.
- Modernize and streamline our lines of communication and information dissemination with the aim of making our own communications better and, more importantly, attract new, young members.
- Help keep Boulder County bees alive and healthy by identifying critical issues and solutions.
- EFB/AFB I’d like to have a bee vet come speak to us again with updates.
- Pesticides - We’re moving into a new era with new pesticides (‘tho those old ones are still around) and research on synergistic effects.
- What to watch for (There are other things out there!)
- Organize members to help our association with its goals because YOU ARE the BCBA!