February 2018 Keystone Volunteer: Drew Cashman

  Drew Cashman is Madison Audubon's keystone volunteer this month. In this photo, Drew is leading a training for Bald Eagle Nest Watch with volunteers who will observe bald eagle nests this winter, spring, and summer. MAS Photo

Drew Cashman is Madison Audubon's keystone volunteer this month. In this photo, Drew is leading a training for Bald Eagle Nest Watch with volunteers who will observe bald eagle nests this winter, spring, and summer. MAS Photo

Drew Cashman is a go-getter. While still living in New York state -- not even in Central time zone yet -- Drew submitted a Madison Audubon volunteer interest form saying he wanted to initiate a new citizen science program when he and his family moved to Madison in July.

Drew caught the bald eagle "bug" while living outside of Denver, Colorado, where he got his first experience with a bald eagle watch program with the Bird Conservancy of the Rockies. Upon moving to eastern New York, Drew launched a similar bald eagle watching program in that area, which includes the eagle-haven Hudson River. He also helped organize the area's Raptor Fest, coordinated numerous bald eagle talks, and led the Mid-winter Bald Eagle Survey. He said, "My main interest is raptors." Ha! No kidding!

  A bald eagle nest at Cherokee Marsh will now be monitored by BENW volunteers, thanks to Drew's work. MAS Photo

A bald eagle nest at Cherokee Marsh will now be monitored by BENW volunteers, thanks to Drew's work. MAS Photo

Then his wife got a job in Madison, and Drew approached Madison Audubon to work with him on setting up the program here too. We now call it Bald Eagle Nest Watch. MAS connected Drew with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, a major partner in the project, and did some advertising, and Drew ran with the rest of it. He scouted out bald eagle nests, coordinates 50 volunteers, organizes and runs training sessions, creates datasheets, spearheads communications, troubleshoots problems, collates and organizes data, and much more. Madison Audubon just tries to keep up!

Drew says the reason he gets his kicks out of volunteering with Madison Audubon is because "I enjoy interacting with all the MAS eagle lovers and helping to protect our local Bald Eagle nesting pairs."

Did we also mention he's incredibly humble?

In summary, Madison Audubon is honored to work with Drew Cashman, who is critical to the formation and success of a thriving citizen science program, Bald Eagle Nest Watch. Thank you, Drew, for going above and beyond for your love of eagles! We truly appreciate your time, talents, energy, and enthusiasm!

To learn how you can volunteer with Madison Audubon, visit our volunteer page.

Written by Brenna Marsicek, Director of Communications