Association meeting minutes – November 13, 2023

18 people in attendance; 16 in person, 2 online

Welcome new members!

  • Annual election for board members
    • Membership director will not be returning this year
    • Idea to provide a description of each position so people are encouraged to volunteer
    • Vote to retain remaining Board members approved
    • 2024 Board of Directors is:
      • President: (open)
      • Vice President: Nathan Allan
      • Treasurer: David Bruun
      • Secretary: Camy Naasz
      • Education Coordinator: Gail Booth
      • Membership Coordinator: (open)
      • Outreach Coordinator: Steve Walker
    • Committee chairs:
      • Library: Lynn Phillipi
      • Mentorship: Bryan Henn
  • Treasurer report – checking $4,162, savings $4,582
  • December meeting will be a potluck and white elephant gift exchange at Swantown Inn
  • Handed out 3 certificates for new apprenticeship class graduates!
  • Special guest speaker: Michael Jaross from Whatcom Bee Help ( on preparations for winter

Association meeting minutes – October 9, 2023

12 people in attendance; 9 in person, 3 online

Welcome new members!

Officer reports:

  • Treasurer – checking $4,582, savings $4,312 – We really need a President! November is election month. Send anyone on the board a nomination and we’ll file it and look forward to it.
  • Acting President – If anyone wants to step up and lead the meetings, I may be spread even more thin next year, lots in the wings we’ve talked about doing, need some help
    • Inspire Olympia
    • Freedom Farmers
  • Education – Handing out 17 certificates for people who took one of the last two classes
  • Mentorship – always looking for mentors
  • Secretary – opportunity to teach kids in 5th grade at East Olympia Elementary about bees and their role in the ecosystem and planting a pollinator garden.
    • Christina and Dale may be able to volunteer to help now or in the future
    • Idea that the club could put together a to-go educational box, maybe also a lending library box

Presentation from Kay Crawford, Bee Inspired Garden, on gardening for pollinators

Association meeting minutes – Sept 11, 2023

23 people in attendance; 19 in person, 4 online

Welcome new members!

Updates from the Board

  • We had a quarterly board meeting in Aug- reviewed and checked-in on the 2023 OBA goals and brainstormed ways to improve mentorship benefits of the club
  • Sign up sheet for bee vanity license plates
  • Finances are in good shape: Savings $4,582.23 checking $4,812.81
  • Move to pay Nathan for use of his facilities for meetings, $125 per meeting, seconded and approved
  • Folks like the Hive Mind idea

Speaker: Ernie Schmidt – Master Beekeeper

Ernie believes the most important thing about being a beekeeper is keeping bees alive. Even though he is a Washington State Certified Beekeeper and well versed in conventional beekeeping, but he is not afraid to think outside the box. He will be sharing thoughts on topics such as “what is a successful keeper and how to be one” and “unorthodox way of controlling Varroa mites, but it works for me”.  Be sure to bring paper and pencil, you will likely be hearing things you want to write down. 

Board meeting minutes – August 5, 2023

Attendees: Nathan, David, and Camy in person; Catie and Gail on Zoom

Finances are in good shape

  • Spent some on brochures, canopy, and fold-up table; would like to purchase a table cover when they go on sale.
  • Equipment – sold off the majority of the hives, got a new uncapping tray
  • Education – increased the cost of the apprenticeship class to $50 a piece
  • Library – no new expenses


  • Currently 129 members
  • New membership really slows down in June/July – opportunity to market or engage more
    • IDEA: Purchase a new electric extractor for the members’ equipment library
  • Membership spotlight program started in April, scheduled through Dec, completed and staged through October
  • Catie wants to draft a welcome letter to send to new members
    • TO DO: Nathan will find out if there is a way to send an automated email to her when new members sign up
  • Catie wants to update the membership benefits area of the website, list “perks” like:
    • Education and social activities
    • Outreach and fundraising opportunities
    • Invitations to hive-side and field events
    • Convenience features like joining or renewing online, hybrid meetings
    • Opportunities to serve the association and the bees (support the mission, board positions)

Association meetings

  • Ways to improve
    • Get high quality speakers
    • Consider meeting every other month so that the board can really prepare for them and make them useful
    • Consider adding a HIVE MIND part of the meeting where members can ask questions of other members
    • Ways to improve the business meeting portion?
  • Nathan has attended the Armory meetings – will be able to accommodate our group if we get larger within the next year or so. We would have to budget for it if we move our meetings there.


  • Last apprenticeship class complete, went really well
  • TO-DO: Nathan got a WASBA 1-day class curriculum and other materials that he will add to the Google drive
  • Journeyman class – want to figure out some of the logistics of it by the end of year with the goal of the class happening next year (we provide the space and instructor)
  • Apprenticeship class happens twice per year (Fall/Winter and Spring/Summer)


  • IDEA: Hive Mind standing agenda item at association meetings
  • Consider mentorship network based on where you live – assign mentors to regions
  • IDEA: Get the Imagine Olympia grant and use some of it to pay mentors for their time, or offer them free membership in the club
  • Club Apiary would make for a good education and mentorship opportunities
  • IDEA: Ask a subject matter expert to talk about how to be a mentor at a team meeting, or offer as onboarding to be a mentor – people would have more confidence how to mentor and that their beekeeping knowledge is enough.


  • Nathan thinks getting functionality to check out a book online is not going to happen
  • Are there ways to get more use of the library?


  • IDEA: Get rid of hand crank extractors and stock electric extractors and capping trays


  • We have volunteers for staffing the steamboat island farmer’s market if they can sell their honey – Aug 19th is the last one of the season
    • TO-DO: David will reach out to see if we can have a table there again
  • David will continue to do the Beeline newsletter and is open to content
  • Consider improvements to the Beeline – short and sweet email that drives traffic to the website
    • Next meeting date/time with Zoom and speaker
    • What’s the season for bees?
    • Member Spotlight

Association meeting minutes – June 12, 2023

33 people in attendance; 30 in person, 3 online

Officer reports

  • Vice President
    • Bulk jar order is in!
    • The association received a honey donation for selling at the Steamboat Island Market 2 weeks ago and we sold out!
  • Treasurer
    • Checking $4,897.24
    • Savings $4,581.46

Upcoming events

  • June 24th is the next Steamboat Island Market – the association will sell your honey for you!
  • Thurston County Fair last week of July
    • Honey judging on the 24th
    • Need volunteers to manage the bee booth – includes admission to the fair, 3 shifts; morning, mid-day, evening

Presentation from Dewey Caron on Reducing Losses: PNW Survey on Overwinter.