Fredericksburg Nerd Nite #19: Obsessions, Grants and Wildlife

Fredericksburg Nerd Nite is ON TRACK for its first re-opening (now quarterly) September 21st at Red Dragon Brewery. Start time is 6:30 pm.

MAKE TRACKS to get this on your calendar. Great speakers. Great Beer. Great Nerds. Join us! Three entertaining speakers are lined up:

Presentation #1

Title: True or False? An Obsession with Taxonomy and Critter Classification

Description: What’s in a critter’s name? And what leads to renaming a critter? Has anyone else ever been told an animal is a “true” ____? Join April for a taxonomy spiral as she divulges why a frog can’t just be a frog or a bug can’t just be a bug. Learn why it matters and why it doesn’t. Are you confused? Join everyone else following organism classification!

Bio: April Harper is an Environmental Education Manager for Friends of the Rappahannock, Board Chair for the Virginia Association of Environmental Education, “Catching Them All” Podcast Host, and general taxonomy enthusiast thanks to years of studying Latin in school. She received her BS in Biology with a minor in Anthropology from Longwood University and her Masters in Public Affairs concentrating in Natural Resource Management from Indiana University Bloomington. Her favorite true frog is the pickerel frog. Her favorite “false” frog is the little grass frog.

Presentation #2

Title: I’ll grant you this, grants writing is hard work! How strategic grants practices can ensure your hard work pays off.

Description: You have a great idea to serve a pressing need in your community, have done the work to form a non-profit, and designed the programs to help you meet that need. Now all you need is find the funds to secure the resources that will help you take that idea from a dream to a reality. Janelle will present on the techniques and strategies that help her company’s clients achieve a grants win rate of 67%, well above the industry average of 17%. She will discuss the importance of prospect research, mission alignment, funder cultivation, developing measurement metrics and tools, creating a grants calendar, and how to navigate a grants portal. Janelle will also discuss the philosophy behind philanthropy and why the current non-profit model is often part of the problem they are trying to fix. 

Bio: Janelle Cawley-Kennedy (third time speaker at FXBG NN after this evening) is a 2002 Mary College Washington College honors graduate (I was there before U) who holds degrees in Philosophy and American Studies. During her marriage to a US Marine, she lived in Scotland, Guam, Hawaii, and across the US, raising two children along the way. As a full-time volunteer working for the welfare of military families, Janelle experienced first-hand the power of organizations to help in the lives of individuals. While in college, Janelle worked for the Park Service as an Interpretive Historian at the Fredericksburg Battlefields. After graduation, she joined the Fredericksburg Area Museum, where she began writing grants to fund the educational programs she designed and presented. In 2019, Janelle joined Elevate, a grants consulting company with over 100 non-profit clients nationwide, where she works as a strategic grants consultant. Janelle’s clients include organizations working to better the circumstances for DC’s unhoused residents, income-stressed children and families, immigrants developing the skills needed to improve employment opportunities, cancer patients using art therapy to help them deal with their cancer journey, and an opera company that reimagines what opera is and can be in order to create performances centered on racial justice and equity.

Presentation #3

Title: Tanzania Safari Tourism and Wildlife ConservationAndrew Dolby, University of Mary Washington biology professor, will present on Tanzania’s wildlife, with emphasis on conservation and sustainable safari tourism.

Description: East Africa is home to some of the world’s most spectacular large animal populations. However, they are under constant pressure from threats such as poaching and habitat loss. A self-professed wildlife and conservation fanatic, Andrew Dolby jumped at the chance in 2021 to visit five of Tanzania’s world-renowned national parks, including Ngorongoro Conservation Area and Serengeti National Park. Through a photo and video tour, he will share what he learned about wildlife management practices in Tanzania and the importance of safari tourism to protecting its magnificent megafauna.

Bio: Andrew Dolby earned a Ph.D. in Zoology at Ohio State University and has been a biology professor at the University of Mary Washington for the last 22 years. He teaches courses in ecology, evolution, and animal behavior and leads student field trips to the Galapagos Islands. In collaboration with Dr. Parrish Waters, his current research focuses on the physiological challenges of migration in birds. When he’s not teaching biology or chasing birds, he enjoys running, hiking, and volunteering for Friends of the Rappahannock.

FXBG Nerd Nite RETURNS: Welcome Fredericksburg!

Welcome to Fredericksburg Nerd Nite! Nerd Nite is a combination of an experience plus a venue that allows nerds to share their passions with the world. Or at least our City of Fredericksburg. Each Nerd Nite event features a quick introduction of the Nerd Nite origin story and speakers. Then, order a beer and some food to enjoy three twenty-minute presentations by different, nerdy speakers. Fredericksburg’s NN was started in 2018 then became inactive. FXBG Nerd Nite has reconvened for quarterly appearances. Our first FXBG NN will be on September 21st. The Red Dragon Brewery has graciously welcomed NN back and will host our events!

Looking for other cities where Nerd Nite is hosted? Check out the Nerd Nite Global’s list.

Red Dragon is hosting FXBG Nerd Nite!