NATL Management

Who Manages NATL?

Lakes, Vegetation and Landscaping Committee (LVL)

The Lake Vegetation and Landscaping (LVL) committee is a six member committee responsible for "items that affect the use of University lakes, including guidelines for use of such lakes in order to preserve their ecological integrity and research capabilities, and the management and well being of natural areas containing non-domesticated plants and animals.". This includes more than 20 conservation areas, two of which house the Natural Area Teaching Laboratory--viz. NATL-west and NATL-east.

LVL roster

Natural Area Advisory Committee (NAAC)

The NAAC is set to oversee and advise the long-term management and development of NATL by the operations committee. A simple majority is required to approve of changes to long-term plans and guidelines. Major changes to NATL land-use require contact of Lakes, Vegetation and Landscape committee, and a UF planner. The committee meets at least once in Fall Semester and once in Spring Semester. Committee business between meetings is handled by email.

NAAC roster
NAAC minutes, etc.

Current NAAC management personnel

NAAC Chair: Anthony Auletta

NATL Co-Chair: Gage LaPierre

NATL Graduate Teaching Assistant: James Brown
NATL Graduate Teaching Assistant: Gage LaPierre
NATL Undergraduate Intern: Nicholas Bratton-Cox
NATL Undergraduate Intern: MaryBeth Stager

NATL Administrative Assistant: Tom Walker

NAAC management manuals

NATL TA Manual
Gator Maintenance Log

NATL Operations Committee

After 2005, as NAAC garnered greater support, NAAC Chairs found it necessary to have weekly meetings of those regularly working in NATL. This group, now known as the NATL Operations Committee, consists of NAAC Chair and Vice Chair, NATL Graduate and Undergraduate Teaching Assistants, and the NATL Administrative Assistant. The purpose of this committee is to implement and supervise direct management tasks at NATL. The Operations Committee is to follow long-term management guidelines set by the NAAC. Any major changes to these guidelines must be approved by a simple majority vote of the NAAC members. The Operations Committee meets weekly to discuss management of NATL following the guidelines of the duties detailed in the Operations Manual.)

Who Funds NATL?

The Provost and the Dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Science provide the principal financial support for NATL. This support is supplemented with income from a small endowment (Appendix 2 of 26Apr2007 NAAC minutes.)

NAAC Operating Policies

The following operating policies were adopted by the Committee on 8 Dec 1995 and revised on 1 Apr 1999, 12 Oct 2001, 20 Mar 2002, 28 Aug 2007, and 3 Aug 2021.


Develop and help implement a plan to restore and maintain a variety of ecosystems in the University of Florida Natural Area Teaching Laboratory (NATL) while maximizing the use of the area for teaching and public education.


NAAC meetings are setup and led by the NATL Chair. NAAC meetings will occur twice a year, once in the Fall and Spring Semesters. Other meetings may be called by the Chair or upon request to the Chair by two or more members. Meetings are open to all who are interested, but only those on the NAAC may vote on motions during the meeting. Anyone who wishes to be notified of meetings will be put on the NAAC e-mail list.


The NAAC membership shall consist of the following individuals:

Any person who wants to join the NAAC may do so if approved by a majority of NAAC members. The interested person must submit a brief self-nomination statement (300 words max.) to the NATL Chair via email. In this statement, the candidate should outline their interest in NATL and reasons for joining the committee, as well as the specific resources and/or expertise they would bring to the NAAC. The Chair will then disseminate the nomination to the NAAC for a vote.

There are no term limits for NAAC members; once approved to be on the committee, a representative may serve for as long as they are willing and able to. If a member no longer wishes to be on the NAAC or is unable to continue serving, they shall contact the NATL Chair to inform them of their decision to leave. They will then be removed from the NAAC, and a replacement representative from their unit may be solicited. The outgoing committee member is welcome to recommend a replacement from their unit, but that nominee must still submit a statement and be approved by the NAAC (as described above).

The maximum size of the NAAC shall be twenty members. Each year, prior to the Spring NAAC meeting, members who have not attended NAAC meetings or otherwise participated in NAAC business during the previous 12 months will be contacted by the Chair and asked if they wish to continue serving on the committee. If such a person wishes to leave the committee, or if no response is received, they will be removed and a replacement representative from their unit may be solicited. If they wish to remain on the committee, they must commit to attending the following NAAC meeting (or contribute meaningfully via email). Otherwise, they will be removed from the committee and a replacement representative from their unit may be solicited.

Every two years, the NAAC membership will be discussed at the Spring meeting to ensure that the committee remains representative of the units that use NATL. Any changes to the membership or associated policies must be approved by a majority vote.


Officers will consist of a Chair, elected by a majority of NAAC members for a term of two years, and a Vice-Chair, appointed by the Chair and confirmed by a majority of NAAC members. Voting may be by email.

The Chair and the Vice-Chair may serve an unlimited number of terms. New chairs may self-nominate and must have served on NAAC.

Committee business

Committee business may be accomplished either at meetings or via email.

At meetings, a quorum of seven members (including officers) is required for issues to be decided. If a quorum is lacking, decisions will be made by email after issues have been discussed by those present at the meeting and the discussion summarized for those absent. A person, designated by the Chair, will be responsible for keeping minutes that include a statement of each motion for which a vote is taken and the count of yes and no votes unless the issue is decided by a voice vote. No later than one week after a meeting, draft minutes of the meeting will be emailed to the NAAC members for members to review and provide additional information and corrections. If no substantive changes are suggested within one week, the draft minutes (including minor changes) will be considered approved and posted on the NATL website. If substantive changes are suggested, the issues will be resolved by those who attended the meeting. If substantive changes are needed, the minutes will be modified and posted on the website and NAAC members will be notified.

For business via email, the Chair will propose an action and allow a week or more for discussion. The Chair will then call for a vote, drop the matter, or begin again with a modified proposal. When a vote is called for, members will have one week to respond with a yes, no, or abstention. For a vote to be final, half the membership must respond and at least seven must vote yes or no. The Chair, or a person they designate, will report the vote to the NAAC and maintain a record of actions proposed via email and how they were disposed of. This record will be an information item at each NAAC meeting and will be made an addendum to the minutes of the meeting.

Annually, the Chair will propose a spending plan that will be an voted upon at the Fall Semester meeting.

Duties of chair

The Chair may delegate these duties to others but is ultimately responsible for their fulfillment.

Duties of Vice-Chair

If the Chair is permanently unable to serve prior to the end of his or her term, the Vice-Chair will serve as Chair until a new Chair is elected, which should occur no later than the next Fall or Spring Semester meeting.

NATL Operations Manual

The NATL Operations Manual, developed by past NAAC Chairs, will be updated by the retiring Chair each time a new Chair is elected. The manual will explain the duties of the Chair and give details of how previous chairs have fulfilled their responsibilities.

Changes in committee operating policies or long-term management plans

Changes will be proposed in writing, sent to members prior to a meeting, discussed at that meeting, and acted upon no sooner than the next meeting.