Cullman Senior Curator, New York Botanical Garden.
Botany with interest in anatomy, morphology, development, paleobotany, and floristic and systematic interests in gymnosperms and monocots.
Founding Member of the Legacy Society, First Director of Development, BSA Distinguished Fellow Selection Committee (4 years), Chair of the Kaplan Memorial Lecture (3 years), numerous student awards committees over the years for the Developmental and Structural and the Paleobotanical Sections. I have participated in numerous BSA symposia including those on pteridophytes, fossils, genomics of land plants, and botanical history. Organized fundraising events and meetings and for the northeastern membership. Published my first paper in AJB and 25 more since then. Reviewer of papers for AJB throughout my career. I have received awards from the BSA: Centennial Award (2006), Distinguished Fellow (2010) and the Service Award (2014).
I have served two terms as President of the Torrey Botanical Society, on the Science Advisory Committee – NATURALIS 2008-present, on the Executive Committees of Global Genome Biodiversity Network (GGBN) 2014-2020 and Global Genome Initiative (GGI) 2015-present, and, presently, a member of the Cycad Specialist Group, Species Survival Commission, IUCN since 1985 (Chair 1990–1996). I have served on numerous panels in various programs for NSF and organized and held NSF workshops. I was Vice President for Science at New York Botanical Garden (2002-2020) and a Founding member of the New York Plant Genomics Consortium. Adjunct Professor at Columbia University (1998-Present), Cornell University (2000-Present), New York University (1995-Present), Yale University (1996-Present), Research Associate, American Museum of Natural History (2016-Present) and a Professorship and Honorary Doctorate, Universíta di Napoli. I have been active in teaching and advising students at these institutions as well as with Tree of Life REU Grants. I have been involved in various journals as Editor of Botanical Review for 28 years, Editor-in-Chief for Cladistics (2008-2020), Editorial Board for FLORA (2006-2012) and, currently, as Associate Editor for PhytoKeys and for Blumea. In 2002, I was made Foreign Member of the Linnean Society of London.
Statement of Interest
I first joined BSA as an undergraduate. I believe that was perhaps one of the most important choices in the long term in the development of my interest and career in botany, both in research and teaching. All my mentors were active in BSA. It was impressed upon me that as one becomes senior in their career, that they should give back to BSA for all they have gained. Moreover, doing so ensures the future of BSA and its impact not just in botany but also for science and society. Now it is time for me to make that commitment. A significant change in BSA since my student days has been tremendous outreach to student participation in meetings as well as student travel awards, research awards, and presentation awards. They, of course, are the future. It is incumbent on us to continue to increase participation in the BSA and continue to strive to move forward with awareness of plants and BSA for society at large in an age where science is in danger of becoming irrelevant. It is clear that continuing to build the Legacy Society and its endowments are necessary for a bright financially stable environment for our leadership in plant science and stewardship of the natural world around us. We have begun quite successfully to develop undergraduate student participation and I would like to see that moved forward at a faster rate. I would like to develop a closer relationship between more botanical gardens across the country and internationally and to have interactive programs with horticultural input for public education.