Welcome Reception, Member’s Banquet and Poster Reception

Welcome Reception & Wildlife Photo Gallery

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  • Tuesday, February 6:  6:00 – 8:00pm (Alexander 2-3-4 Ballroom)
  • Extra Fee Required, $15
  • No-Host Bar open 6-8pm and food served from 6:15-7:45pm
  • Menu:  Chicken fajitas with Peppers and Onions, White corn tortillas, Queso Fresco, Black Beans, Shredded Cheese, Rice.  Build your own nacho station with tri-color tortilla chips, seasoned ground beef, jalapeno cheese sauce, sour cream, green onions, black olives, limes, shredded lettuces, guacamole & assorted salsas.

Join us on Tuesday evening to kick off the Annual Meeting and make connections with new & old friends and colleagues. We will serve street tacos along with delicious toppings and fresh fruit, plus a (well-stocked) no-host bar will also be available. Tuesday evening will also launch our wildlife photo exhibit. Check out what fellow Western Section members have been up to lately, and celebrate the opening night of our 65th Annual Meeting. Relax, you have arrived in Santa Rosa!  We have a great week ahead of us.

Submit your photos and enter to win a $200 REI Gift Card!   A slideshow will be displayed at the Welcome Reception. The content is up to you! Send in your photos of wildlife, coworkers, TWS workshops, study animals, unexpected situations, beautiful locations, etc. Help us celebrate wildlife and the wildlife profession! Please send photos in jpg format to evelarrucea@gmail.com by February 1st. Each person that submits a photo(s) for the Tuesday night wildlife gallery will be entered in a drawing for a $200 REI Gift Card! The drawing will be held on Tuesday evening at the Welcome Reception. Need not be present to win.

Members Banquet and Section Awardsbanquet-collage

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Enjoy an evening of reconnecting with your colleagues and friends and making new acquaintances over a good meal at the annual members banquet.  During the banquet, we will also celebrate and recognize individuals, groups, and chapters for their achievements and accomplishments with our Western Section Awards.  If you haven’t previously attended a Western Section banquet, now’s the perfect time to start a new tradition.

  • Wednesday, February 7
  • Extra Fee Required, $40
  • Located in the Alexander Ballroom
 Banquet Schedule:
6:00 – 7:00pm – No-Host Cocktail Bar
6:45pm – Doors Open for seating
7:00pm – Banquet Begins, Salads Served
7:20pm  – Entrees Served
7:45pm – Banquet Presentation (All meeting attendees welcome to join us at 7:45pm for the Program.  Extra seats will be available.)
8:00pm – Awards and Recognitions
9:00pm – Raffle
Annual Members Banquet Presentation:
What Science Needs: Narrative Training
 At the end of a 40-year journey from science to cinema and back to science, Randy Olson now recommends that the primary focus for improving communication skills be what he calls “Narrative Training.”  Olson left a tenured professorship in marine biology for a 20-year film career that resulted in his writing three books on science communication.  He now works with a range of government agencies and universities helping scientists communicate more effectively.  He points out that universities are oriented more towards teaching and the pursuit of intellect.  What is needed for the real world is the building of intuition.  This requires experience.  Narrative Training is a starting pathway for this.  Unlike a college course that has a syllabus outlining a schedule of new topics every week, narrative training consists of repeated “workouts” using templates such as the ABT (And, But, Therefore) Template he presented in his 2015 book, “Houston, We Have A Narrative.”  His version of narrative training is called Story Circles and is now gaining widespread use with U.S. Department of Agriculture (14 circles), National Park Service (6 circles), U.SA. Fish and Wildlife Service (2 circles), American Association for Advancement of Science, and other organizations.  In this talk he will present the basic tools of narrative structure, the concept of narrative training, and explain how it is now being used.

Awards Banquet Menu :

  • Vineyard Creek Garden Salad (gf) – Mixed greens, radicchio, port poached pear, toasted almonds, citrus vinaigrette
  • Choice of:

Pistachio Crusted Salmon with basmati rice pilaf, roasted brussel sprouts, pomegranate beurre blanc


Slow Roasted N.Y. Strip with buttermilk mashed potatoes, cabernet reduction, shallot confit


Butternut Squash Risotto  with Cypress grove midnight moon cheese, spiced cashews, caramelized Brussel sprouts, melted leeks

  • Chocolate Decadence Cake (gf) with seasonal berries and raspberry reduction
  • Served with Coffee/Tea, Rolls and Butter.   If you have special dietary restrictions, please let us know when you register.  We will do our best to accommodate you.

20160227-1015Raffle and Silent Auction

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All 2018 ticket sales and silent auction purchases will be donated to the Lowell Diller Endowment*.  Raffle tickets will be sold starting at the Tuesday night Welcome Reception and up through the Banquet on Wednesday evening.   The raffle will be a Dutch/Bucket raffle and will be held at the end of Wednesday night’s banquet.  Place tickets in the buckets for the prizes you hope to win.
The silent auction will open on Wednesday and will close during the Thursday evening poster session.  Items must be purchased and picked up by 11:00am on Friday.
*Lowell Diller died March 4, 2017.  To memorialize his contributions to Humboldt State University — where he had worked as an adjunct professor since 2001 — an educational endowment is being created to help future students who are as passionate about wildlife as Diller was.  In fact, that’s one of the stipulations of the endowment: “The student must show Lowell Diller’s passion for wildlife and love of field work and show promise to be a teacher and mentor to others as he was.”
We encourage everyone to purchase raffle tickets, which are available at the Registration Desk or from Western Section Executive Board members and volunteers. Raffle and silent auction items will be displayed in the Exhibit Hall in the Alexander Ballroom.  Please contact Raffle and Silent Auction Chair Sandra Hunt von Arb if you have any questions or would like to donate an item to the raffle and/or auction.   pnwb@suddenlink.net 

Poster Session and Reception

poster session

  • Thursday, 6:00pm to 8:00pm, February 8
  • Session Chairs: Carlos Alvarado and Allison Fuller
  • Poster Session and Reception included with conference registration fee!
  • Located in the Alexander Ballroom

A poster session and reception will be held on the evening of Thursday, February 8th.  Authors will be available to answer questions about their posters.  Hors d’oeuvres will be served along with several (well-stocked) no-host bars!
Posters will also be available for viewing Wednesday starting at 2pm and all day Thursday (in the Russian River Ballroom).  For more information on poster presenter guidelines, click here.

Coffee and Bagels with Poster Presenters

  • Thursday, 7:00-8:30am (Russian River Ballroom)
  • No extra cost

This is another opportunity for meeting attendees to chat with poster presenters about their research.