524 Rosemont Garden
LEXINGTON KY 40503-1742
Contact Information
Address 524 Rosemont Garden
LEXINGTON , KY 40503 1742
Phone (859) 229-9421
Contact Name Tony Brusate
Web and Social Media
Roxy, an American Kestral, visits the CKAS table at Science Fair
At A Glance
IRS Ruling Year 1968
Former Names
Buckley Hills Audubon Society
Other ways to donate, support, or volunteer
Donations can also be made by mailing checks payable to:
Central Kentucky Audubon Society
524 Rosemont Garden
Lexington KY 40503
Keep informed of cool central Kentucky bird stuff and volunteer opportunities by signing up for our free monthly newsletter.
Financial Summary
Mission Statement
The mission of the Central Kentucky Audubon Society is to build an organization to support environmental education, conservation, and recreational programs for the mutual benefit of the National Audubon Society, the members of the Central Kentucky Audubon Society, and the Community. CKAS aims to foster environmental conservation by promoting the enjoyment, understanding, and preservation of birds and their habitats.
Background Statement
In 1967, Mrs. Wallace Campbell, an ornithologist, and Ms. Page Dunlap combined forces to start a local National Audubon Society chapter with members from nine of the ten counties we still serve today. Initially, we were called the Buckley Hills Audubon Society, taking the name from the Clyde E Buckley Wildlife Sanctuary, at that time a recently-dedicated natural area created as a local Audubon sanctuary which we intended to help National Audubon manage. The first official meeting of the Buckley Hills Audubon Society was held on October 26, 1967. Officers and a Board of Directors were elected the next month. We continue to represent the National Audubon Society, a local presence for its ideals and goals. In 2014, with the retirement of the Buckley Wildlife Sanctuary's 35+ year manager, National Audubon relinquished management of the sanctuary and our organization assumed the current name – Central Kentucky Audubon Society, or CKAS – to better reflect the area we serve.
Impact Statement In addition to sponsoring educational exhibits like the live raptor display every February at the Kentucky American Water Fayette County District Science Fair, we're working on several conservation projects like putting up Barn Owl houses and American Kestrel houses at local wineries and restoring native grasses at local parks. We concentrate on helping bird species listed as "of concern" by the Kentucky Department of Fish & Wildlife. We hope to extend our educational outreach by helping local science teachers build and maintain chimney swift towers at their schools, by presenting free movies and hosting events that help people realize the beauty and value of birds, and by otherwise sharing our love for and desire to protect birds--the same love and desire that founded the National Audubon Society over 100 years ago.
Needs Statement Though most of our members are from Fayette and Woodford counties, we serve a ten-county area in central Kentucky. We need people who love birds to get more involved: join us for walks and meetings, volunteer to help help with the annual Bluegrass Birding Festival each May, help with our conservation projects like our restoring native grasses endeavor or our winery Barn Owl project, write for our monthly newsletter (writers of all ages/skill levels are welcome!), and share with us any ideas you might have to help the birds in our area.
CEO/Executive Director Statement
We find ourselves between the hundred-year anniversaries of two extinctions: the last passenger pigeon died on September 1st, 2014 and the last Carolina parakeet died on February 21, 1918.

Martha, the last known passenger pigeon, had lived her whole life in captivity and passed away in the night at the Cincinnati Zoo on September 1st, 1914. It’s commonly believed that she was 29 years old, old age for a pigeon. She survived the last known member of her species by a little over four years, during which time the Zoo even offered a $1,000 reward to anyone who could find her a mate. She was famous even before her death, a symbol for the threat of extinction. Many Americans believed the species would never go extinct because at one point its flocks numbered in the billions. Several reports from the early 1800s record migrations which included so many birds that skies would blacken with birds for days. But commercial exploitation of pigeon meat on a massive scale and loss of habitat for farming dropped their numbers below the threshold necessary to propagate the species.

Incas, the last Carolina parakeet died on February 21, 1918, coincidentally in the same Cincinnati Zoo aviary cage in which Martha had died nearly four years earlier. Incas' mate, Lady Jane, had died less than a year earlier. The species is believed to have died out because of a number of different threats. To make space for more agricultural land, large areas of forest were cut down, taking away its habitat. The bird's colorful feathers (green body, yellow head, and red around the bill) were in high demand as decorations in ladies' hats. The birds were also kept as pets and could be bred easily in captivity (though little was done by owners to increase the population of tamed birds). Finally, they were killed in large numbers because farmers considered them a pest. A factor that contributed to their extinction was the unfortunate flocking behavior of rushing to the aid of their injured, leading to even more being shot as the birds gathered about the wounded and dead members of the flock.

Many hope these two sad anniversaries will be a call to action. But in November of 2013, two endangered Whooping Cranes were illegally shot and killed in Hopkins County, here in Kentucky. Even if authorities do catch the perpetrator, the courts have usually imposed minimal penalties – sometimes as low as $1 and a few month probation – instead of the possible $100,000 fine and one year in prison which the law allows. Also recently, in its vigor to push clean energy sources, the Obama administration approved thirty-year eagle-taking permits at wind turbines, essentially allowing wind-power companies to injure or kill Bald and Golden Eagles without fear of prosecution for the next three decades. “Instead of balancing the need for conservation and renewable energy, Interior wrote the wind industry a blank check,” said National Audubon President David Yarnold.

We need to stand for our beliefs, and we also need to act on them. So we are. Central Kentucky Audubon Society members engage in several projects designed to assist birds listed as “species of concern” in Kentucky. We're mounting Barn Owl and American Kestrel houses at local wineries. We build Prothonotary Warbler nest boxes – as many as 100 at a time – to donate to the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife. We encourage owners of fields known to be nesting areas for Henslow’s Sparrows to delay their seasonal mow until later in the Fall after the young birds have fledged. We are looking into restoring native prairie in come of our local parks and other ways we can improve local bird habitat. We partner with Bluegrass Earth, Lexington Public Library, Good Foods Co-Op, Sierra Club, Bluegrass GreenSource, Wild Ones, the Urban Forestry Initiative, and other environmental organizations to present free movie showings: Wings of Life, The City Dark, Chasing Ice, The Messenger, and many others. We help Wild Birds Unlimited and Lexington Parks & Recreation put on the annual Bluegrass Birding Festival, hoping to share our love of birds and to introduce local birding to youth and families throughout the region. We orchestrated a Master Mural Class with the internationally-renowned muralist Hitnes for several UK students and local artist and secured permission and funding to paint an Audubon-themed mural on UK's Ecolocogical Research and Education Center.

We can’t do all this without your help, and we extend our deepest thanks to those who have already been hard at work for the birds. If you want to get more involved with these or other projects, drop an e-mail to President@CKAS.org. Do it in memory of Martha and Incas.
Service Categories
Secondary Organization Category Animal Related / Wildlife Preservation & Protection
Tertiary Organization Category Animal Related / Bird Sanctuaries
Geographic Areas Served
We represent ten counties in central Kentucky: Anderson, Bourbon, Boyle, Clark, Fayette, Jessamine, Madison, Mercer, Scott, and Woodford.
Impact Questions
GoalsHelpWhat is the organization aiming to accomplish? This is the organization's ultimate goal for intended impact. Our organization's goal is to help birds, specifically those in central Kentucky, but also those in the rest of the state and beyond. The birds that come into our yards fly all over the world. If we can make our yards, our neighborhoods, our cities, and our part of the world safer for birds, that's a good thing and it's important to us. This starts by identifying what birds in our area need and then working to provide assistance, whether that be establishing nesting areas, food sources, safe habitat or working to influence bird-friendly legislation. We feel that every native species of bird is important and we want to do our part to help them thrive.
StrategiesHelpWhat are the organization's strategies for its stated long-term goals? Meeting our goals involves a mix of hand-on projects, education for school children and the general public, and occasionally lobbying for bird-friendly laws and regulations. We want to build barn owl and kestrel houses, set up bluebird trails, restore native grasses at local parks, put up chimney swift towers in parks and at local schools, help science teachers bring the wonder of birds to their students, show movies that emphasize the need for bird conservation, and hold birding festivals to share our love of birds with the people of central Kentucky.
CapabilitiesHelpWhat are the organization’s capabilities for doing this? What resources, capacities, and connections support its progress towards long-term goals? We have the strength of the National Audubon Society behind us. They've been supportive with small grants and they want to see us do whatever it takes to help birds in our area. We've gotten better at determining what birds in central Kentucky need, in part by partnering with groups like the Kentucky Department of Fish & Wildlife's Non-Game Division. If there's one thing that holds us back, it's finding the time to accomplish everything we want to do. Though it never surprises us how many people love birds, we could always use a few more hands getting important work to help birds done. We have over 900 Chapter members, but many don't have the time to be very active.
IndicatorsHelpHow will the organization know if it is making progress? What are the key qualitative and quantitative indicators against which the organization assesses its progress toward its intended impact? We know we are making progress when we dedicate an owl or kestrel house, when even before the Science Fair starts there are young "bird groupies" waiting at the table to see the raptors, when the question and answer session after an environmental movie we've shown runs so long that the library has to kick us out, when someone we've never met shows up at a meeting or volunteers to help with our projects, when Lexington or the surrounding cities adopt bird-friendly legislation or building standards, when a "species of concern" in central Kentucky increases in number and moves a little closer to being removed from that list, and when we never again hear reports of birds as endangered as Whooping Cranes being wantonly shot here in Kentucky.
ProgressHelpWhat has and hasn’t been accomplished so far? When we first thought up our Barn Owl Project, hoping to build and put up barn owls at local wineries so the owls would benefit from more safe places to live and the wineries would benefit from some free rodent control, we weren't sure if the wineries would be interested. But every winery we've approached has thought the idea was spectacular. We put up our first house at Talon in 2014 and the second at Chrisman Mill shortly after. We hope to extend the project to many other locations. W e hope to erect a Barn Owl house at Equus Run soon, and extend to other local wineries (and maybe bourbon distilleries) over the next few years. For those locations that don't really have an old unused silo or barn suitable for barn owls, we can provide houses for American kestrels, another species of concern. So we've learned to partner with people and we've learned to adapt when needed. And we're learning how to move people from just liking pretty birds to actually rolling up sleeves and getting involved with helping our feathered friends.
Board Chair
Board Chair Prof. Anthony C Brusate
Company Affiliation n/a
Term June 2014 to July 2017
Board Members
Dr. Ramesh Bhatt Department of Psychology at University of Kentucky
Ms. Rebecca Brown Community VolunteerVoting
Prof. Anthony (Tony) Brusate James Motor Company Mercedes SalesNonVoting
Dr. Jessica Hollis Ohio University Department of EnglishVoting
Mr. David Lang RetiredVoting
Ms. Angela Myers Yankee CandleVoting
Mr. Nic Patton Wild Birds UnlimitedVoting
Ms. Paula Plonski Center for Clinical and Translational Science at University of KentuckyVoting
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 7
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 1 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 4
Female 4
Unspecified 0
Board Term Lengths 4
Board Term Limits 5
Board Meeting Attendance % 95%
Written Board Selection Criteria? Under Development
Written Conflict of Interest Policy? No
Percentage Making Monetary Contributions 88%
Percentage Making In-Kind Contributions 100%
Constituency Includes Client Representation No
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 5
Board Co-Chair
Board CoChair Mr. David Lang
Company Affiliation Retired
Term June 2015 to June 2018
Email VP@CKAS.org
Additional Board Members and Affiliations
Mrs. Josephine Barrows Retired
Mr. James Cain Retired
Mr. Dillard Griffin Kentucky American Water
Mrs. Pat Tuttle Retired
CEO Comments A few years ago, the National Audubon Society loosened the requirements for local Chapter rules and regulations. Our Constitution, last updated in 1986, still meets the general National requirements, but it doesn't fit as well with our current direction as we'd like. We've started in on a major overhaul of this document, only to find that it's quite an undertaking, a bigger undertaking than we expected. We hope to have it revised and approved soon.
CEO/Executive Director
Executive Director Prof. Tony Brusate
Term Start June 2011
Email president@centralkentuckyaudubon.org
Full Time Staff 0
Part Time Staff 0
Volunteers 22
Contractors 0
Retention Rate 0%
Management Reports to Board? Yes
Staff Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 0
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0 0
Staff Demographics - Gender
Male 0
Female 0
Unspecified 0
Formal Evaluations
CEO Formal Evaluation N/A
CEO/Executive Formal Evaluation Frequency N/A
Senior Management Formal Evaluation N/A
Senior Management Formal Evaluation Frequency N/A
NonManagement Formal Evaluation N/A
Non Management Formal Evaluation Frequency N/A
Description Barn Owls were plentiful across Kentucky as late as the 1960s. Currently, however, there are only about sixty documented nesting locations statewide; the Barn Owl is included as a "species of greatest conservation need" in Kentucky's State Wildlife Action Plan (KDFWR 2005). Barn Owls have gradually lost their historic nesting and foraging habitat as landowners cut down old trees and convert pastures, hayfields, and grasslands to row crops. Vineyards, however, have proved to be good barn owl habitat in California; Barn Owl house projects there have been very successful. The open vineyard fields provide ample hunting grounds and the owls provide the wineries with some natural predator control. There are over a dozen vineyards/wineries in central Kentucky. We have approached several who have agreed to work with us to establish such a program. We are working closely with the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Non-Game Division to select suitable sites, and for monitoring and banding purposes. We helped arrange a release of a rescued Barn Owl at one of our nest box locations. We hope to have success attracting at least one nesting Barn Owl pair and we hope to add many more locations in the future.
Budget 1500
Population Served , ,
Description Though all the wineries we have approached have loved the idea of establishing Barn Owl nest boxes at their properties, not all properties look suitable for owls. Unless the winery has an unused silo or an old, mostly empty barn, it may not have a good location for mounting an owl house. But even currently used structures can be good mounting locations for American Kestrel boxes, another species of concern. For those wineries interested in participating in the barn owl project which might not provide very good barn owl house mounting locations, we're offering Kestrel houses instead.
Budget 500
Population Served , ,
Description Every year for the last several, we've sponsored the Raptor Exhibit at the District Science Fair. We contract Raptor Rehab out of Louisville to bring several of their live education birds to the event. It's always a big hit with the students and the parents alike. We've had an assortment of kestrels, owls, vulture, eagles, and hawks all live at the event. It's an opportunity for people to see up close these magnificent birds, to ask questions about them, and to snap picture after picture. We also give away several bird-inspired door prizes and a few free one-year memberships to the National Audubon Society.
Budget 750
Population Served , ,
Description As more and more people cap their chimneys and cut down old hollow trees, the chimney swift has had fewer and fewer places to roost and nest. But artificial chimney towers which swifts readily accept are fairly easy to construct. We hope to have our first tower built at the Arboretum State Botanical Garden in Lexington in conjunction with an Eagle Scout candidate. Eventually, we hope to erect several more towers at local schools, perhaps even wiring the towers with video equipment so science classes can witness chimney swift nest-building and raising of young.If you are an interested Eagle Scout candidate or science teacher, please contact us.
Budget 750
Population Served , ,
Description We are currently investigating the feasibility of reestablishing native grass areas at several local parks. This idea began with hoping to reclaim some area at Masterson Station Park, but it has quickly expanded into a discussion of Hisle and Veterans Parks. We are working with Lexington Parks & Rec, Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources, and the National Resource Conservation Service to evaluate several potential locations. Taking the restored grass areas at Shaker Village as an example, we hope to plant native clump grasses and a variety of forbs, aiming to attract and provide habitat for several native grassland species of concern like Henslow's and Grasshopper Sparrows.
Budget 1000
Population Served , ,
Plans & Policies
Organization has a Fundraising Plan? Under Development
Organization has a Strategic Plan? Under Development
Years Strategic Plan Considers N/A
Management Succession Plan? No
Organization Policy and Procedures Under Development
Nondiscrimination Policy Under Development
Whistleblower Policy No
Document Destruction Policy No
Government Licenses
Is your organization licensed by the Government? No
Fiscal Year
Fiscal Year Start July 01, 2015
Fiscal Year End June 30, 2016
Projected Revenue $9,500.00
Projected Expenses $9,000.00
Endowment Value $24,919.00
Spending Policy N/A
Detailed Financials
Revenue SourcesHelpThe financial analysis involves a comparison of the IRS Form 990 and the audit report (when available). Revenue from foundations and corporations may be included in individual contributions when not itemized separately.
Fiscal Year201520142013
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
Government Contributions$0$0$0
Individual Contributions$340$1,078--
Investment Income, Net of Losses$4$26$29
Membership Dues$320$350--
Special Events------
Revenue In-Kind------
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201520142013
Program Expense$6,410$8,345$3,339
Administration Expense$15$55--
Fundraising Expense$761$749$609
Payments to Affiliates$2,784$329--
Total Revenue/Total Expenses1.100.720.71
Program Expense/Total Expenses64%88%46%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue11%15%29%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201520142013
Total Assets$62,955$61,251$664,672
Current Assets$38,035$36,653$64,672
Long-Term Liabilities$24,919$24,598--
Current Liabilities------
Total Net Assets$62,955$61,251$64,672
Form 990s
2015 Confirmation of 990 filing
2015 990-N
2014 990-N
2013 990-N
2009 Form 990
Capital Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? No
State Registration Yes
CEO Comments
Donors may notice a lapse in our filing of the Federal 990-N; we skip from 2010 to 2013... Being a small, 100% volunteer organization, we have not needed to file anything more than a 990-N e-postcard for the last several years. We filed our 990-N in 2010 and then had a complete change of our board. The new 100% volunteer board did not realize until 2013 that we were required to file a 990-N. Luckily, there is no penalty for failing to file and failure to file has no dramatic repercussions unless an organization fails to file for over three consecutive years. This will not be an issue in the future.
Foundation Staff Comments This organization files the 990N postcard, which requires no financial information. Financials were provided by the organization. Numbers are unaudited.
Address 524 Rosemont Garden
LEXINGTON , KY 405031742
Primary Phone 859 229-9421
CEO/Executive Director Prof. Tony Brusate
Board Chair Prof. Anthony C Brusate
Board Chair Company Affiliation n/a