Outreach and Education Committee

Wednesday, 9:00 a.m.
May 26, 2010

Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
Commission Hearing Room
4200 Smith School Road, Austin, TX

Commissioner Margaret Martin, Committee Chair
Lydia Saldaña, Committee Liaison

Approval of Previous Meeting Minutes

  1. Update on TPWD Progress in Implementing the TPWD Land and Water Resources Conservation and Recreation Plan
    Staff:  Carter Smith
    • Texas Partnership for Children in Nature
    • Outdoor Regional Events
    • Texas Paddling Trails
    • Public Awareness Campaigns on Invasive Species
    • Statewide Catfish Angler Survey
    • Promotion of Outreach Fishing Programs
  2. TPWD Social Media Efforts
    Staff:  Lydia Saldaña
  3. Outreach Efforts of the Wildlife Division
    Staff:  Kelly Bender, Meredith Longoria

Committee Agenda Item No. 1
Presenter:  Carter Smith

Outreach and Education Committee
Update on TPWD Progress in Implementing the
TPWD Land and Water Resources Conservation and Recreation Plan
May 26, 2010

I.          Executive Summary:  Executive Director Carter Smith will briefly update the Commission on the status of the agency’s efforts to implement the Land and Water Resources Conservation and Recreation Plan (the “Plan”).

II.        Discussion:  In 2001, the 77th Texas Legislature directed that the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) develop a Land and Water Resources Conservation and Recreation Plan (Tex. Park & Wild. Code §11.104).  In 2002, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission (the Commission) adopted the first Plan.  A revised Plan was adopted by the Commission in January 2005.  In November 2009, the Commission approved a new Plan effective January 1, 2010.  The 2010 Plan is available on the TPWD web site.  Executive Director Carter Smith will update the Outreach and Education Committee on TPWD’s recent progress in achieving the Plan’s goals, objectives and deliverables as they relate to the Outreach and Education Committee.

The Plan consists of the following four goals:

  1. Practice, Encourage and Enable Science-based Stewardship of Natural and Cultural Resources
  2. Increase Access To and Participation In the Outdoors
  3. Educate, Inform and Engage Texas Citizens in Support of Conservation and Recreation
  4. Employ Efficient, Sustainable and Sound Business Practices

Committee Agenda Item No. 2
Presenter:  Lydia Saldaña

Outreach and Education Committee
TPWD Social Media Efforts
May 26, 2010

I.       Executive Summary:  Lydia Saldaña, Communications Division Director, will update the Commission on the use of Social Media at TPWD.  Social Media tools and platforms – such as Facebook, YouTube, Flickr and Twitter – have expanded the agency’s communications reach, and yielded tangible benefits in terms of promoting TPWD’s conservation message to a broad new tech-savvy audience.  Beginning in Fall 2009, the agency implemented a coordinated strategy including the establishment of an official Social Media policy and guidelines.  Meanwhile, the agency’s main Facebook page has garnered about 25,000 followers, while the agency’s official YouTube channel has had more than 227,000 video upload views.

Committee Agenda Item No. 3
Presenters:  Kelly Bender
Meredith Longoria

Outreach and Education Committee
Outreach Efforts of the Wildlife Division
May 26, 2010

I.          Executive Summary:  The Wildlife Division is involved in a wide diversity of outreach and education efforts throughout the state. During fiscal year 2009, staff provided 1,040 wildlife clinics, field days and seminars demonstrating proper wildlife management practices and on-going research activities.  Division staff also provided 614 programs targeting almost 30,000 youth, minorities and women.  The Division provided information on wildlife, habitat management, public hunting and regulations to nearly 197,000 people in FY 2009.

II.        Discussion:  Staff will brief the Commission about the many outreach efforts of the Wildlife Division on Wildlife Management Areas, including landowner workshops and field days, programs for school groups, outreach to public hunters and youth through hunter orientations and youth shooting sports events.  Staff will discuss education and outreach activities targeting a growing number and diversity of landowner-driven Wildlife Management Associations throughout the state.

Commissioners will also learn about the role of urban biologists and their work in providing technical guidance to municipalities and multi-county Councils of Government that affects land-planning efforts (green space designation, watershed protection, green space management) within those governed areas.  Technical guidance to small landowners, green space managers, and park developers in both traditional one-on-one as well as workshop and large-scale community “visioning” formats will be discussed.  Finally, training and guidance to local volunteers who help multiply TPWD efforts in local conservation, restoration, and outreach activities will be discussed.

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