At its June membership meeting, the members of Texas Master Naturalist Brazos Valley Chapter, Inc., present unanimously adopted the following statement modifying Criterion 8 of the Advanced Training Criteria in the Chapter Management & Operations Protocols (CMOP) for the Chapter. The modification also applies implicitly to volunteer opportunities to the members of the Chapter. The statement is:
"Master Naturalists, by their nature, are curious people. Context is important in order to interpret the phenomena we see in the natural world around us. Too narrow a view restricts the ability of a naturalist to understand what they are seeing and to interpret it for others. We are impacted by and impact other regions through rivers, migrations, invasive species, and other factors.
"The State Office of the Master Naturalist Program has now limited the ability of chapters to offer training and volunteer service by including the wording “and the Chapter’s local community or ecoregion” to Criterion 8 of advanced training approvals in the Chapter Management and Operations Protocols (CMOP), which formerly restricted those opportunities to Texas. While not explicit, this restriction would seem also to apply to volunteer opportunities, as well, and this has been confirmed in conversations with the State Program Coordinators.
"Texas Master Naturalist, Brazos Valley Chapter, Inc., serves Brazos County, but has members who live in surrounding counties. Some have second homes in other regions of Texas. We have collaborated with and assist other chapters in the region in projects, programs, and training.
"The CMOP does not define “local community and ecoregion,” and we have been encouraged by the State Program Coordinators to interpret Criterion 8 broadly. Therefore, in order to provide the richest experience for its members and to provide the greatest context for understanding, Texas Master Naturalist, Brazos Valley Chapter, Inc., adopts the original wording, as modified:
“'Provide natural resource management issues and information applicable to Texas, with emphasis on, but not limited to, the Chapter’s local community or ecoregion.'
"Adopted unanimously by the membership present at a membership meeting 8 June 2017."