News from the Society, the Sections and the Committees

Call for Nominations: Editor-in-Chief, American Journal of Botany

In keeping with the by-laws (Vl-1) of the society that specify a five-year term for the Editor-in-Chief of the American Journal of Botany, the Botanical Society of America is soliciting nominations for the position of Editor-in-Chief beginning in the year 2000. Please consider nominating yourself or others for this extremely important position. Qualities for candidates should include a research career in botany, a commitment to improving the journal and willingness to pursue innovations such as electronic publication, a breadth of botanical experience, and good communication skills. The Editor-in-Chief will have assistance from an office manager and a copy editor and will receive an annual honorarium. Specifics of the position will be negotiated with the Executive Committee of the Society. Please send nominations to Dr. Beryl B. Simpson, Editorial Selection Committee Chair, Department of Botany, The University of Texas, Austin, TX 78713.

BSA Enjoys August Meeting in Baltimore

The annual meeting of the Botanical Society was held August 2-6 in Baltimore, Maryland, at the Baltimore Convention Center. The participants agreed that the Baltimore meeting was one of the most successful in the past few years. The meeting was held under the umbrella of the 49th Annual Meeting of the American Institute of Biological Sciences. The theme of the AIBS meeting was "Managing Human-Impacted Systems."

This year the Society met jointly with the National Association of Botanical Gardens and Arboreta, the American Fern Society, the American Society of Plant Taxonomists, the Association for Tropical Biology, the Association of Systematics Collections, the Ecological Society of America, the International Society for Ecological Modeling, and the Torrey Botanical Society. A large number of symposia and contributed paper sessions were offered in addition to the important business meetings of the Society and its various sections. There are a number of reports from this meeting in this issue of the Plant Science Bulletin, and additional reports will appear in future issues. The Past-President's symposium, organized by Dan Crawford, focused on "G. Ledyard Stebbins and Plant Evolutionary Biology in the Next Millenium."

Looking to the future, the 1999 meeting will be held August 1-7 at the America's Center in Saint Louis, Missouri, in conjunction with the XVI International Botanical Congress. Planning is proceeding for a year 2000 BSA meeting August 6-10, 2000, at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland, Oregon. Sites in the Southwest are being examined for 2001.

Young Botanist Awards - 1998

The following individuals received recognition for Special Achievement as Young Botanists:

Kimberly Baxter (UC Davis)
Tessa Edelen (Miami-Ohio)
Emily Griswold (UC Davis)
Kelly Hyland (Bucknell)
Alex MacKinlay (U of South)
Hilary McManus (SUNY Oswego)
Robin O'Quinn (UC Davis)
David Taylor (Sam Houston State)
Erica Brown (Willamette U)
Craig Erickson (Miami-Ohio)
Jeremy Hall (Willamette U)
Sarah Kreunen (Truman State U)
Wendy McDowell (Purdue)
Amber Moody (U Colorado)
Matthew Santo (Conn Coll)
Christy Welch (Purdue)

The following individuals received Recognition from the Young Botanists Program:

Heather Cooley (Miami-Ohio)
Scott Namestnik (Miami-Ohio)
Justin Husher (Miami-Ohio)
Leslie Turpin (Miami-Ohio)

Past President's Report

In addition to Chairing the Election and the Corresponding Members Committees, the Past President's Symposium was organized and letters were sent to all Past Presidents requesting funds for the Karling Awards.

The Symposium for 1998 is entitled "G. Ledyard Stebbins and Plant Evolutionary Biology in the Next Millennium". The basic theme is to discuss Stebbins' views on the topics of hybridization, speciation, polyploidy and origin and radiation of the angiosperms in light of more recent data and theory. The speakers will also present their visions of future research efforts necessary for answering important questions in the pattern and process of plant evolution. Those speaking are Michael Arnold, Donald Levin, Pamela and Douglas Soltis, and Mark W. Chase. Vassiliki Betty Smocovitis will present introductory remarks.

The letters to all living Past Presidents soliciting financial support for the Karling Award fund resulted in several positive responses.

Daniel J. Crawford

ISSN 0032-0919
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POSTMASTER: Send address changes to:

Kim Hiser, Business Manager
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Phone/Fax: 614/292-3519      email:

News from the Committees

Archives and History Committee:

The archival material is still in the possession of Jim Mauseth in Austin, Texas, and no new material has been received over the course of the year. Other than this, the Committee has dealt with only one small piece of business this year, a student's request for biographical information on Margaret Clay Ferguson, who was president of the Botanical Society in 1929. We were able to give him quite a bit of information, with the help of the Missouri Botanical Garden archives.

Alan Whittemore, Chair

Corresponding Members Committee

The Committee enthusiastically support the nomination of Dr. Konrad Bachmann, Head, Department of Taxonomy, Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research, IPK, Gatersleben, Germany as a Corresponding Member of BSA. Professor Bachmann has been a productive researcher for more than three decades while holding faculty positions in the United States, The Netherlands and his native Germany. He has made pioneering contributions to understanding the genetic basis of morphological features in plants, using the genus Microseris as a model. He was among the first to use molecular markers for dissecting the genetic basis of morphological variation in plants. His research is of fundamental importance for understanding morphological differences between species and the genetic basis of speciation. Dr. Bachmann was the first to document that adaptations in wild plants may be controlled by one or a few major genes; these results have important implications for models of adaptation and speciation in plants.

Dr. Bachmann has been actively involved in professional societies at the international level. He is now President of the International Organization of Plant Biosystematists (IOPB), serves on the editorial committees of three highly respected journals, and has organized a number of symposia including the IOPB Symposium in Amsterdam in August, 1998.

Professor Bachmann is a dedicated and effective teacher, and a number of postdoctoral researchers from his laboratory have moved on to excellent academic positions and have become productive researchers. Numerous letters from distinguished scientists express very high regard for Dr. Bachmann, and all strongly and enthusiastically endorse his nomination as a Corresponding Member of BSA.

Daniel J. Crawford, Chair

Conservation Committee

This year our activities included:

  1. Reviewing and endorsing a statement written by the California Native Plant Society that opposes transplantation as mitigation for impacts to rare plants.
  2. Developing a conservation committee e-mail list that will allow the committee to efficiently review future conservation-related documents for the Society, like the statement mentioned in #I.
  3. Appointing a liaison to the IUCN Species Survival Commission Native American Plant Specialist Group and the Native Plant Conservation Initiative.

The liaison will be Kayri Havens in both cases.

Kayri Havens, Chair

Education Committee Stays Busy

The committee continued work on several major projects:

Support of the BSA Web Page

GOAL: To publicize the Botanical Society's web page, especially to non-member teachers, and to tell them about resources available to them from the BSA.

STATUS: David Kramer designed a printed page containing a list of Education Committee activities and a tearoff bookmark with our web page address. This was printed at BSA expense and distributed at the 1998 convention of the National Association of Science Teachers in Las Vegas.

Improvement of Pre-College Science Education

GOAL: To support the improvement of science education through participation at conventions of science teachers.

STATUS: Rob Reinsvold and Ethel Stanley attended the annual meeting of the National Science Teachers Association in Las Vegas as representatives of the BSA Education Committee and the Teaching Section. They worked out of a booth sponsored by ASPP and Fast Plants organized by Paul Williams. Rob reports that "It was a huge success in the educational outreach efforts of BSA to K- 1 2 teachers. The conference was well attended by over 20,000 science educators. We distributed BSA materials and increased the awareness of effectively using more plants to teach biological principles at the K-16 levels."

This outreach was supported by a $1500 appropriation to our committee by last year's Council. The success of this first outreach effort attests to the need for expansion of these efforts. We want to participate again at the NSTA meeting in 1999 and also send representatives to the 1999 meeting of the National Association of Biology Teachers. We have an invitation from ASPP, APS, and other professional societies to join in sponsoring a booth dedicated to plant biology education at these conferences. To expand this work, the Committee submits the following resolution to Council:

Motion: That the Council approves a sum, not to exceed $5000 (for travel, lodging, registration fees, and a share of booth rental) for selected BSA members to attend national, regional, or state meetings of organizations like the National Association of Biology Teachers and National Science Teachers Association for the purpose of presenting workshops on plant biology in the K-12 curriculum and distributing education materials in support of expanding the quantity and quality of plant biology.

If the Council approves the expenditure, the Education Committee will select members to represent BSA in these activities and will authorize payments upon proof that the workshops and other outreach activities had been performed as proposed.

Digitized Botanical Images

GOAL: To digitize the BSA's collection of +/- 700 35mm slides, then to make the images available through a web page or CD-ROM or both.

STATUS: Thomas W. Jurik (Dept. of Botany, Iowa State University) chairs a subcommittee in charge of this project. He reports that they are ready to begin digitizing the slides and we hope to have them available through the web page in the next six months. Council has already authorized (at the 1997 Council meeting) the publication of the images in this format. The subcommittee continues to explore the many technical and legal details associated with this project but we expect the pieces to come together soon.

Motion: That the Council approves a sum, not to exceed $500 (for software and disks) for this project.

Participation in Workshops of the Coalition for Education in the Life Sciences (CELS)

GOAL: The Botanical Society is a member of CELS, "a national coalition of professional societies in the biological sciences. The mission of CELS is to improve undergraduate education in the life sciences by bringing the expertise and resources of the life sciences professional societies to bear upon critical issues relating to life science undergraduate education in the United States."

STATUS: Members of the Education Committee represented BSA at three CELS events this year:

  1. Rob Reinsvold, Marshall Sundberg, and Ethel Stanley represented the BSA at a conference, "Toward Literacy in Plant Biology," in Madison, WI cohosted by CELS and ASPP. Representatives from several biological societies attended. The workshop launched a discussion of ASPP's document, "Principles of Plant Biology -Concepts for Science Education." There was also a discussion of ways societies can support undergraduate education in biology.
  2. David Kramer represented BSA at a CELS workshop, "Collaborations in Undergraduate Biology Education," held July 9, 1998 at the Airlie Conference Center, Warrenton, VA. This was a meeting of the chairs of Education Committees or Executive Directors of more than 20 professional societies in the life sciences. The purpose was to exchange information about current projects and to build new coalitions for improving undergraduate biology education.
  3. At this AIBS meeting, Gordon Uno (BSA and AIBS), Alan Berkowitz (ESA) and Louise Liao (CELS) will present a workshop, "Teaching College Biology: Roles for Professional Societies" in which the collaboration of societies will be explored further. They hope this will attract undergraduate instructors who will help us understand how best to support their professional development and the improvement of biology education at the college level.
Publication of Plant Biology Laboratory Activities

GOAL: To publish hands-on, discovery-type plant biology exercises for use in schools as well as at colleges and universities.

STATUS: Gordon Uno, a member of our committee and chair of the AIBS Education Committee, believes that a set of such activities published earlier by the National Association of Biology Teachers, but now out of print, can be updated and revised for publication. We have discussed this project with Dr. Wayne Carley of the NABT. Gordon will pursue the project after his relocation to Washington, DC.

Review of Plant Biology Manuscripts for Publishers
GOAL: To offer assistance to publishers who are seeking professional review of manuscripts for plant biology books. We want to make sure the plant biology content is correct before it is published.

STATUS:Last year we reported on a successful manuscript review for a publisher of children's books. The committee wants to encourage other publishers to use this service. This year, we need to find a way of publicizing this service to all publishers of science materials (electronic as well as print media). If we receive many requests for this service, we will need to recruit reviewers from our membership.

David W. Kramer, Chair

Election Committee
There were elections for the offices of President-Elect and Treasurer, with two candidates for each of the offices. Douglas Soltis was elected President-Elect and Edward Schneider was elected Treasurer.

The four proposed bylaws changes, dealing with membership categories, award committees and duties of the Treasurer, were all approved.

Daniel J. Crawford, Chair

Esau Award Committee
Each year, the Esau Award is given for the best student paper presented in the Developmental and Structural Section at the annual Botanical Society of America meetings. This year, the Esau Award was given to Amber Moody of the University of Colorado for her presentation "Architectural and developmental analysis of the vegetative propagule of Mimulus gemmiparus (Scrophulariaceae)" that was coauthored with Pamela K. Diggle and David A. Steingraber. This paper explored the morphological identity and evolution of novel asexual propagules in Mimulus gemmiparus, a rare endemic of Colorado. In Mimulus gemmiparus, two meristems are initiated in the axil of each leaf primordium. The distal meristem has the potential to become either a lateral branch or a flower, and the proximal meristem becomes a vegetative propagule (the gemma) that is ultimately surrounded by an expanded, saccate petiole. The first leaves of the propagules are thickened and are the site of nutrient storage. Through developmental analysis of the propagules and comparative analysis with the suspected progenitor species, Mimulus guttatus, Amber Moody was able to demonstrate that these unusual vegetative reproductive structures are brood bulbils that correspond both architecturally, developmentally and evolutionarily to the proximal meristems (which typically remain dormant) of M. guttatus.

William (Ned) Friedman, Chair

Membership and Appraisal Committee
A new membership brochure and poster are in the final stages of design prior to production. These will initially be distributed through a network of local campus representatives of the Society. Committee members are canvassing those identified on the previous list of campus representatives (approximately 400 individuals) to verify willingness to continue in this capacity. Additional representatives will be solicited, as needed, to ensure distribution to all campuses where an active BSA member resides.

Marshall Sundberg, Chair

Moseley Award Committee


Article X, Section 4 (f): "Moseley Award" consisting of a chair appointed by the President and two other members, chosen by the President in consultation with the Development and Structural Section and Paleobotanical Section chairs, each serving three-year terms with one new member being appointed each year. 'Me prize is awarded to a student who is the sole or senior author of a paper, orally presented in the Developmental and Structural Section or Paleobotanical Section of the annual meeting, that best advances our understanding of the plant anatomy and/or morphology of vascular plants within an evolutionary context.

1998 Committee

Number of Papers to be Judged in 1998

Past Recipients:

Esau and Moseley Committees are meeting to ensure collaboration on judging and selection of awardees. Also meeting with Paleo student award Committee.

Ed Schneider, Chair

Editorial Committee for Volume 44
Allison A. Snow (1998)
Department of Plant Biology
Ohio State University
Columbus, OH 43210
Nickolas M. Waser (1999)
Department of Biology
University of California
Riverside, CA 92521
P. Mick Richardson (2000)
Missouri Botanical Garden
P.O. Box 299
St. Louis, MO 63166
Vicki A. Funk (2001)
Department of Botany
Smithsonian Institution
Washington, D.C. 20560
Ann E. Antlfinger (2002)
Biology Department
University of Nebraska - Omaha
Omaha NE 68182

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