GOSA Committees are the working groups of volunteers that make all things happen from record keeping to grant writing to fund raising to property evaluation, acquisition, guided hikes, and stewardship. All committees can use the support of our volunteers to help proactively and effectively support GOSA’s current and future needs.
Acquisition & Land Research Committee
The Acquisition & Land Research Committee (ALRC) researches and identifies desirable parcels of land for protection within GOSA target area of SE CT and develops criteria to evaluate identified parcels for worthiness of protection as open space. The ALRC collaborates with federal, state, regional, municipal, and non-governmental organizations to establish conservation plans, partnerships, funding sources and support. The ALRC establishes relationships with owners of potential project parcels and forms action plans to protect priority parcels.
- Enduring interest and commitment to long-term projects: average 4 years
- Knowledge of real estate law, appraisals, surveys, title searches, purchase and sale negotiations, contracts
- Knowledge of nonprofit tax law, conservation restrictions
- Background in evaluation of conservation land values: botany, wildlife, wildlife habitats, wetlands, forestry, geology, history, and related subjects.
- Fundraising and publicity skills: research of funding sources, photography and writing skills for government and foundation grants, brochure and flyer production, social media and newspaper publicity, and willingness to lead tours to promote the project properties
The Communications Committee (CC) drives the development and deployment of printed materials, digital communications, and publications for use on the GOSA website, social media platforms, and via email and mailings to the public, partner organizations, and our membership. Printed materials include GOSA property signs and postings, GOSA history book, property brochures, fundraising materials, trail guides, posters, etc. Digital communications include website, social media, newspaper articles, and formal GOSA position statements, etc.
Community Outreach Committee
The Community Outreach Committee (COC) serves to foster an appreciation of nature through education and outdoor natural experiences. The COC aims to introduce our community to our local forests, steams, and wildlife to cultivate a life-long appreciation of the outdoors and a willingness to participate in efforts to protect and preserve our resources.
The COC partners with many local organizations including Groton Public Schools, Groton Public Library, and Thrive 55+ (senior center) to provide educational experiences in nature through experiential learning and hands-on activities.
- Background and/or passion in the natural sciences and outdoors
- Interest in sharing experience and knowledge with our community
- Provide guided hikes and outdoor events
The Finance Committee (FC) provides oversight of accounting and reporting practices, advice to the GOSA Board of Directors (BOD), and support to the Treasurer. The FC advises the BOD on organizational financial risks, contracts, insurance coverage, conflicts of interest, checks and balances, withdrawals and deposits, investments, and compliance with mandatory state, federal and municipal registrations, and tax forms for corporate and 501©3 organizations. The FC advises and assists the Treasurer in the development and periodic review of the annual budget, filing the annual federal IRS 990, quadrennial municipal M-4 tax exempt forms, annual municipal Personal Property forms, and M-3 forms for new property acquisitions.
The FC actively reviews monthly financial statements, conducts in-depth reviews of accounts at mid and end-of-year intervals, and oversees the management of donor data. The FC processes donations received by mail as well as recording and acknowledging all forms of gifts. Additionally, the FC manages donor records including membership information, donor contact information and gift history. The FC provides the BOD periodic donor reports and a targeted list of donors for the annual appeal mailing. The FC uses QuickBooks software for accounting, and Little Green Light software for donor data management.
- Experience in fiscal management and accounting practices
- Familiarity with QuickBooks, Little Green Light and/or Microsoft Excel software
- Background in nonprofit law, contract law, real estate law, IRS tax law, charitable donation guidelines
- Investment and banking
Nominating & Recruiting Committee
The Nominating & Recruiting Committee (NRC) established methods of recruiting and attracting individuals as Committee Members or GOSA Board of Directors (BOD) who support of GOSA’s mission and care as much as we do about protecting and preserving our local lands so they are enjoyed well into the future. The NRC aims to foster effective succession planning and knowledge transfer and management within the BOD through mentorship and grooming of GOSA Members.
The NRC performs the yearly review of the alternating terms of elected Officers and BOD Directors for scheduled term expirations, or unscheduled vacancies for other reasons, and reports those to the BOD. The BOD instructs the NRC annually to develop slates for elective Officers and Directors for approval, within the agreed upon guidelines provided by the BOD for the upcoming election.
Property Planning Committee
The Property Planning Committee (PPC) develops management plans for all GOSA properties. Understanding the composition and health of the forests, fields, wildlife, and waters and ensuring that they remain healthy is the core component of these plans. Locating historic and prehistoric sites to protect is important. Finally, management plans need to ensure that parking, trails, meet visitor needs without negatively impacting the properties.
The Stewardship Committee manages and maintains each property in accordance with their management plan. General land management activities include mowing, invasive plant removal, trail work and mapping, obstruction removal, trail and property markings, trash and debris removal, boundary management, native plantings, and forestry management. Stewardship is supported by the participation from volunteers, members, businesses, and organizations which support community service. Safety of our crews is the top priority.
GOSA purchases, maintains, stores, and utilizes equipment to allow volunteers to be effective in their work. Planning sessions are held periodically throughout the year. Work parties are weekly in the warm weather months, and as needed otherwise.
For more information on Stewardship, go to our Stewardship information page.