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Retired Ornithologists' Union

In 2014, the American Ornithological Society (then AOU) initiated a new effort to more fully embrace and support the tremendous contributions of our senior members with the formation of the Retired Ornithologists Union (ROU). The ROU, chaired by Dr. Alan Brush, serves as an AOS forum for informal interactions among senior colleagues (age 62+ or retired). In previous decades, the phrase “a meeting of the ROU” was code for “cocktail hour,” hence we hope this group will provide a fun experience at meetings for our most senior members. We also hope younger members will be able to tap into their decades of experience, wisdom and motivations as they move through their careers.

The first gathering of the ROU occurred at the 2014 annual meeting in Estes Park, Colorado. Charter members heard an update on society activities from executive members and discussed future plans for the ROU. Ideas include:

  1. A newsletter circulated prior to the annual meeting that summarizes Council and editorial activities for the previous year, as a means of disseminating information on the society's administrative concerns and accomplishments.
  2. Special recognition at meetings such as an icon on the name badge, recognition at the annual banquet, reduced fees for spouses/caretakers/companion, and differential fees for membership, meetings and publications.
  3. Special activities at meetings such as a lunch/happy hour to encourage social interactions, low-impact field trips, and/or a presentation by a leading ornithologist at one or another of these events where new techniques may be informally discussed (e.g., genomics).
  4. Providing personal connections to colleagues who are restricted due to health, location or any other circumstances.
  5. Sharing of information regarding other interests in retirement.

For more information, contact AOS.

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