Creating and Sustaining a Resilient Volunteer Corps

Creating and Sustaining a Resilient Volunteer Corps: Best Practices for Organizations Small and Large (INT)
Judy Kingsbury, University of Wisconsin-Madison Arboretum

Land stewardship projects run the gamut from small trash clean-up efforts in school forests to prairie restorations on the scale of thousands of acres. The projects may be overseen by one dedicated citizen or be multi-stakeholder efforts involving conservation non-profits, federal and state agencies, and private landowners. What most stewardship projects have in common is the involvement of volunteers. In this presentation, Judy Kingsbury will cover the essential practices of effective volunteer engagement, from the initial planning phase to recruitment, training, evaluation, and on to the celebration and recognition of volunteer achievements. These practices foster long-lasting success for volunteers and organizations. Drawing on her experiences at the U.W. Madison Arboretum and as a volunteer on several restoration projects, Judy will share stories and information relevant to those who work with volunteers, whether it's five people or five hundred.

Judy Kingsbury, University of Wisconsin-Madison Arboretum
Judy Kingsbury has been the coordinator of volunteer programs for the University of Wisconsin-Madison Arboretum since 2002. She collaborates with colleagues to recruit, place and train volunteers in restoration, gardening, education and visitor services positions. The UW-Madison Arboretum involves more than 1200 volunteers each year. Judy is active on the board of the Dane County Administrators of Volunteer Services, her local professional association. She is also involved with the Reimagining Service Team of the United Way of Dane County, part of a national initiative to foster best practices in volunteer engagement through all sectors of society. She has presented several workshops on effective volunteer engagement. Her career with the UW-Madison Arboretum began when she volunteered at the summer day camp and continued with paid positions as a naturalist, volunteer steward coordinator and ranger.