MEEA Board Responsibilities
MEEA members are eligible to be elected to the Board of Directors, MEEA’s governing body. Board members serve two year terms, and serve on at least one committee. Once serving for a year, Board members are eligible to serve on the Executive Board (President, President-Elect/Secretary, and Treasurer). Additionally, MEEA recently added an Advisory Board to its structure to advise, assist, and advocate to the Board of Directors on behalf of matters that will strengthen opportunities for MEEA members and beneficiaries. Advisory Board members are selected and appointed by the MEEA Executive Board, and may be nominated by the MEEA Executive Board, the Advisory Board, or the Executive Director. MEEA is in the process of updating policies and practices to reflect Dynamic Governance, a method of governing that centers around consent-based decision-making, valuing all perspectives, and transparency.
Visit our Document Library for MEEA’s articles of incorporation, by-laws, policies/procedures and financial documents as well as past meeting minutes and our collection of downloadable resources.
- At-Large Board Members
- Executive Director
- Assistant Director
The President’s responsibilities are 1) to set the agenda and run the meetings, and 2) to have and exercise general charge and supervision of the corporation (MEEA) including staff. This is a two year term, with the first year as president/elect secretary and the second as president. It is one of the shortest descriptions because this position is responsible for overseeing all of the activities listed below.
The President Elect/Secretary’s responsibilities are 1) to perform the duties and possess and exercise the powers of the President at their request or in their absence or disability, 2) to communicate with team leaders and staff monthly to check on progress, 3) to take minutes at the meetings (except when chairing them in which case they should designate a substitute Secretary), 4) to serve as chief liaison with the North American Association for EE and 5) countersign all instruments executed by the President on behalf of the corporation as directed by the Executive Board. This is a two year term, with the first year as President/Elect Secretary and the second as President.
The Treasurer’s responsibilities are 1) to keep the records of the books of account of the corporation and receive and disburse funds of the corporation as directed by the board, 2) keep accurate accounts of all financial transactions, 3) make reports at the monthly meetings, 4) make all records available for audit as directed by the board, 5) submit an annual summary of transactions at the end of the year and 6) oversee the financial responsibilities of the organization. In practice, the Treasurer oversees the work of the Executive Director who handles day to day management of resources and of the Accountant who prepares quarterly financial statements and preparation of non-profit filing to the IRS (the 990 EZ). The Treasurer is the convener of the Resources Team. This is a two year term.
The At-Large Board Members’ responsibilities are 1) to help set policy under the supervision of the President, and 2) to assist with developing plans for and implementing policy goals and objectives, including being part of a Team, assisting with the Conference and providing at least one monthly column for the newsletter.
The Director’s responsibility is to help implement board policies, goals and projects.
People Team duties include : handling membership applications and renewals, newsletter, website, facebook posts, coordinating EE awards, working with other groups, and attending and tabling at conferences and workshop.
Purpose Team duties include: managing the certification program, providing logistical support for the conference, coordinating EE grants.
Resources Team duties include: tracking and managing income and expenses, working with the treasurer and board to develop the annual budget, working with the treasurer and accountant to prepare the annual 990 EZs, apply for grants and scholarships, and develop and implement fundraising strategies.
Governance Team duties include: researching issues for the board to consider, assisting with strategic planning, and filing required paperwork.
Governance: Meet our Amazing Team!
Board of Directors
Tonia Scherer, St. Louis
I’ve always had a passion for education, beginning my career as an English teacher. Eventually, however, I found myself feeling limited teaching in an indoor classroom setting and wanted to foster stronger connections between my students and the natural world around them.
Laura Seger, St. Louis
I have worked as both an educator and a manager of EE programs, for infants to adults. I am passionate about the field and have strong networks that are accessible as resources.
Erin Graves, Herculaneum
I am a science teacher with a love of everything outdoors in nature and doing my part in helping to “save the world”. I teach high school Biology in Jefferson County, Missouri. I sponsor the Ecology club there and am proud to say the students have done so much to reduce the carbon footprint of everyone at our school.
Jeff Birchler, Springfield
Immediate Past President
I am currently the Center Coordinator for the Watershed Committee of the Ozarks where I facilitate education and outreach activities for groups of all ages and backgrounds.
Ben Freiman, Columbia
I am a Farm-to-School Educator at the Columbia Center for Urban Agriculture. I’ve known that my passion in life is connecting people to nature for as long as I can remember.
Kaylee Holt, Kansas City
I have worked for Missouri State Parks for 5 1/2 years and currently serve as the Urban Outreach Coordinator for the Kansas City region. In this position, I work with community organizations and local schools to share Missouri’s natural and cultural resources and recreational opportunities with people living in urban areas around Kansas City.
Stacey Parker, aka “Parker”, St. Louis
In the summer of 2020 after working in academic and student affairs as an assistant professor and assistant director of academic initiatives, I left the field of higher education after 20 years and entered the world of environmental education and advocacy.
Joan Ruppert, St. Louis
I have been a nurse for 47 years and am recently retired as faculty from University of Missouri-St. Louis College of Nursing. When taking classes for my doctoral degree, I learned about schools that frame curriculum around nature and the natural curiosity of children.
Nick Speed, St. Louis
Born and raised in St. Louis, MO, I developed a passion for taking care of the planet, food justice, and working with youth. From 2017-2020, I served as a Youth Educator for Gateway Greening. I’ve taught over 300 students in the St. Louis Public School District about science, nature, and urban agriculture. In addition to working with kids, I’ve facilitated professional development for other educators in the region, and assisted in the development of community garden projects.
Brooke Widmar, Springfield
I am the Education Outreach Coordinator for James River Basin Partnership, which is a water quality organization in Southwest Missouri. JRBP visited my school when I was in the 5th grade, which got me hooked on water quality and environmental education.
I currently work as a community organizer for the Sierra Club’s Missouri Beyond Coal campaign. Throughout my career, I have mobilized various communities across Missouri
The concept of experiential education entered my life when I was living in Germany as a young adult where I participated in a program that changed my lens of learning forever.
I own and manage the St. Louis office of National Nursery Products, a horticultural sales, marketing and consulting company representing wholesale growers of a diverse variety of ornamental and environmental landscape plants.
Jennifer Schamber, St. Louis
I am the general manager of a family-owned garden center, Greenscape Gardens in west St. Louis County, Missouri. Greenscape was the 2015 national winner of Today’s Garden Center Magazine’s Revolutionary 100 for their work in the promotion of native plants.
Lesli Moylan, St. Louis
Before leading MEEA, I was been a longtime youth gardening and outdoor education advocate, providing direct gardening and nutrition education to students as well as professional development opportunities for educators. Since working for MEEA, I have learned so much about how varied and expansive the field of environmental education is!
Jamin Bray, Salem
I grew up loving the outdoors and knew early on that I wanted to become a wildlife biologist. I earned a BS in Fisheries and Wildlife from the University of Missouri, Columbia. The pivotal moment when I discovered Environmental Education was when working at a research laboratory. I was asked to interpret science to the public (especially school groups and community educators) as a Public Affairs Specialist. From that moment on, I have been determined to help citizens understand the challenges our environment faces, and how we can meet those challenges.
I am a St. Louis native and a recent graduate of Washington University. I attended and graduated from Washington University, where I studied Classics – Ancient Greek and Roman History and Language – and remained motivated by my early wish to be a lexicographer, a person who compiles lists of new words for dictionaries. My interests include reading, writing, listening to music and foraging. I have two fur babies, a cat and a dog, that I love very much. During my year of service, I hope to help more schools find their green and initiate more community waste cleanups.
I’ve always had a strong passion towards nature and enabling others to get involved in activities that promote the wellbeing of the environment. Nature provides me with a different perspective of the life that exists outside of human beings. Being a Missouri Green School VISTA provides me with the opportunity to increase this passion through implementing environmental sustainability, health and wellness, and environmental literacy in schools and communities.
Conservation and environmental learning weren’t easily accessible concepts within my background but it didn’t stop me from curating a life and career advocating their importance. From eradicating invasive species across the nation; to increasing bird habitat through native tree planting; to becoming a Ph.D. student in the Human Dimensions of Natural Resources researching how to improve environmental education accessibility for our underserved youth, this passion permeates throughout every facet of my being. As the Missouri Green Schools Partner Network Coordinator VISTA, every opportunity to engage and inspire more involvement in poverty alleviation through environmental, health, and sustainability education acts of change will create a better future for our youth of today and our communities tomorrow.
MEEA’s members are the lifeblood of our organization, they’re why we exist and you drive our priorities. MEEA members include classroom teachers, informal educators, community members, parents, youth, and even organizations like schools, nonprofits, agencies, and businesses. We want everyone to have not only a seat at the table but a voice, which is why all membership levels include voting privileges and eligibility to serve on the Board of Directors. We have over 600 members to date, and we welcome you to join this community as well!