NANPA 2013 Board of Directors Candidate
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1) Give us a brief overview of your job, photographic, educational, volunteer, organizational board/committee skills, etc.
I am a self-taught, freelance nature photographer based in Greenville, NC. Through my business, New Life Photos, I lead monthly one-day field workshops in North and South Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia and Tennessee. In addition, I market my work at art shows and festivals in the Carolinas and Virginia. I have exhibited my images in a variety of venues, including the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, North Carolina Museum of Life and Science, and other local and regional galleries and arts council exhibits. In addition, my work at a local camera shop in sales and teaching classes and workshops has given me a different perspective on the growing interest and developments in the photography world. My images have appeared in publications and websites, including Wildlife in North Carolina magazine, National Wildlife Federation's PhotoZone website, NANPA's Expressions, and more. I am also a long-time member of Carolinas Nature Photographers Association (CNPA).
My educational background includes a BA and MA in English. This education, along with a passion for making things happen, led me to be founder of the Breast Cancer Resource Directory of North Carolina, one of the nation's first statewide resources for those impacted by breast cancer. This project necessitated an education on the nonprofit world and project management, grant writing, fundraising, production and distribution, and the importance of building partnerships with individuals, community, corporate, health and educational institutions. Since 2001, four editions have been released and distributed to tens of thousands free of charge in print and online. The majority of this project was an intensive, time-consuming labor of love on my part. With small exceptions, this has been a 10-year volunteer effort. I am dedicated to hard work and major effort to make things happen.
2) How long have you been an active member of NANPA?
I have been an active member of NANPA since 1998. I began volunteering and serving on committees in 2002.
3) What Summits/Forums have you attended?
I have attended every NANPA Summit since 1999 in San Diego. I would not consider missing any of the Summits. They are incredible opportunities to learn, to share and to network and connect with those in the industry - peers, mentors, exhibitors - and to be inspired by the incredible work of our members and leaders in the field of nature photography.
4) Have you served as a NANPA volunteer or worked on a committee?
In 2005 I served on the Regional Events Committee. Since 2006, I have been an active member of the Summit Committee, serving first on the breakouts committee and progressively increasing my role as Exhibits Chair, Breakout Committee member, Breakout Committee Chair, Summit ProgramVice Chair and Summit Program Chair through the 2011 Summit. In 2011 I was appointed to the NANPA Board to serve out the remainder of Allison Jones term. I have served on the Communications Committee and have been Board Liaison for the Regional Events and Communications Committee as well as the Summit Committee. Since May 2012, I have also been serving as the Summit Chair, overseeing all aspects of planning for the upcoming Nature Photography Summit in Jacksonville, FL.
5) What particular expertise and/or qualities would you bring to the NANPA Board?
I believe that success comes when each person on a team is committed, cooperative, creative and reliable. I strive to bring these qualities to the table in every area of my work and service. In addition, I bring strong communication and organizational skills, attention to details, and an equally strong work ethic. These are among the skills and qualities I bring to NANPA in working together to find solutions and implement new ideas.
6) NANPA is a young organization experiencing amazing growth. To help bring about a successful passage into maturity, every member of the Board is required to put in considerable time and effort. Will you be able to participate fully and actively? If you are self-employed, can you afford to take time away from your business? If you are an employee, or in some other way connected to an organization, will your job responsibilities allow you the freedom to attend to NANPA business?
I am committed to serving fully and actively in whatever way is necessary to accomplish the goals of NANPA. The roles I have served during the last few years have required an extensive amount of time and energy --all in addition to running a business and serving as a leader in other projects. My personal commitment to do my very best in any endeavor is what keeps me moving forward. I am happy to invest the time and efforts necessary to fulfill any commitment I make to NANPA as a member of the Board.
7) How would you use your abilities to further the NANPA mission: "to provide education, foster professionalism and ethical conduct, gather and disseminate information, and develop standards for all persons interested in the field of nature photography. NANPA further seeks to promote nature photography as an art form and a medium of communication for the sciences, nature appreciation, and environmental protection." Do not address the entire mission, but only those aspects that align with your own know-how, interests, and goals.
I believe it is important to be an example for others to follow. Through my classes, field workshops, presentations and interactions with people in a diverse range of venues, I take every opportunity to encourage awareness of the beauty and fragility of all living things through nature photography, educate on ethical behavior in the field and foster respect for wildlife and all nature, and encourage people to help where they can on local and regional levels to protect our natural resources. I encourage all those I come in contact with to learn as much as they can about their subjects as well as photography and to find ways to share that knowledge with others. I believe that the more we share our imagery and thoughts and ideas about nature and its fragility, the more support we can gather to retain and restore the resources we have.
8) How do you envision NANPA's role in the future of nature photography? How would you further that role?
NANPA has the potential to be the organization that links diverse groups of individuals and organizations through the common thread that includes a passion for nature and photography and the impact that joining the two can have, regardless of skill levels or specific interests. I would work to further that sense of community that educates and positively impacts our natural world.
9) Why do you want to serve on the NANPA Board of Directors? If elected, what would you personally like to accomplish during your term on the NANPA Board?
While serving on the NANPA Board of Directors these past two years, I have learned more about what incredible people resources we have in our organization. There are exciting things on the horizon for NANPA as the connecting point of nature and photography. I want to be a part of that community building process. If elected, I will continue to work toward building the NANPA Learning Center to provide a way for members and the nature-loving public in this world to enrich their knowledge, skills and appreciation for nature, and a way to encourage more active participation in nature photography projects that have a positive impact on local, regional, national and worldwide communities.