Fall 2013 ESA Election Results


  • ESA

The results of the fall 2013 elections for Governing Board members and the Board of Professional Certification are as follows. Governing Board members will take office after the 2014 Annual Meeting. Board of Professional Certification members took office 1 January 2014.

Governing Board

President-elect/President/Past President:

Monica G. Turner

Vice President for Finance:

Evan H. DeLucia


Ana Elise Perez Quintero


Leah R. Gerber

Board of Professional Certification

Janet S. MacFall

Sylvie M. Brouder

Request for Student Award Judges

Murray F. Buell Award and E. Lucy Braun Award

Judges are needed to evaluate candidates for the Murray F. Buell Award for the outstanding oral presentation by a student and the E. Lucy Braun Award for the outstanding poster presentation by a student at the Annual ESA Meeting at Sacramento, California in 2014. We need to provide each candidate with at least four judges competent in the specific subject of the presentation. Each judge is asked to evaluate 3–5 papers and/or posters. Current graduate students are not eligible to judge. This is a great way to become involved in an important ESA activity. We desperately need your help!

Please complete and send this form by mail or e-mail to the Ecological Society of America, Attn: Buell/Braun Awards, 1990 M Street, NW, Suite 700, Washington, DC 20036, e-mail:buellbraun@esa.org. If you have judged in the past several years, this information is on file. If you do not have to update your information, simply send an e-mail message, ″Yes, I can judge this year.″

Please refer to the PDF of this article for the application form.

ESA's Third Decade: The War Years

Kiyoko Miyanishi

Although ESA membership had declined significantly during its second decade, most likely due to the depression, it regained its former numbers to ~700 by the 1942 directory. Generally, each issue of the Bulletin included lists of names of new members, deaths, and resignations. New members during the third decade included R. F. Daubenmire and Charles Elton (1936), G. Evelyn Hutchinson and W. D. Billings (1937), Eugene Odum (1940), and Hugh M. Raup (1944). Deaths reported in the Bulletin during this decade included W. M. Wheeler (1937), Joseph Grinnell and H. C. Cowles (1939), R. L. Lindeman (1942), Chancey Juday (1944), and F. E. Clements (1945). The first obituaries appeared in 1939 for Grinnell and Cowles, but through this decade, obituaries remained very brief, with one or two paragraphs at most. In 1943, the Bulletin noted the inauguration of “post office zone numbers” (an early version of zip codes) in some large cities and asked members in such places to provide this information in their address.

While the contents of the Bulletin continued to consist largely of announcements of regional and annual meetings (with call for abstracts) and subsequent programs for these meetings, there were also some interesting issues that arose during the fourth decade, such as revisions to the constitution and changes to the ESA Executive, financial problems and solutions, debates over ESA's purpose/function, and impacts of the war on meetings.

In 1937, a number of changes to ESA's Constitution and By-Laws were made. A key amendment split the position of Secretary-Treasurer into two positions. Thus, the previous Secretary-Treasurer, Orlando Park, became Secretary and Stanley Cain was elected Treasurer. Editors and Editorial Board Members for Ecology and Ecological Monographs were from the beginning elected in the same manner as other ESA officers. At this time, ESA had several ad hoc committees and six standing committees: Applied Ecology, Nomenclature, Preservation of Natural Conditions for the USA, Preservation of Natural Conditions for Canada and Newfoundland, Publications, and Study of Plant and Animal Communities.

The finances of the Society were a serious concern, with publication of Ecological Monographs continuing to operate at a substantial annual deficit. Previously in 1928, the Society had dealt with the increased publishing expense by introducing a new category of membership called Sustaining Member, for whom annual dues were $10 instead of the normal $4. The difference of $6 was to support Ecological Monographs. Life Members could also become Sustaining Life Members by payment of an additional $100 over the normal $100. By 1942 the Directory listed 43 Sustaining and 2 Sustaining Life Members. In 1937, when ordinary annual expenses of ESA stood at $630, regular Active Membership dues were $4.25; in 1938, this was increased to $5 and Institutional Membership to $6, while other categories remained unchanged. That same year, V. E. Shelford wrote an open letter in the Bulletin asking for increased financial support for the work of two ESA standing committees: Preservation of Natural Conditions, and the Study of Plant and Animal Communities. He argued that ESA had contributed <30% of the committees' expenses of $3996 over 18 years. After the Executive considered various options for raising the money needed to support these committees, in 1944 yet another category of membership was introduced, that of Contributing Members, who would pay $10 (similar to Sustaining Members), but who could designate the additional funds to their choice of committee.

Lack of financial support wasn't Shelford's only complaint with ESA. When the Committee on the Preservation of Natural Conditions was established in 1917, its duties were “to initiate and carry out actions concerned with preservation of natural conditions.” While the Committee began by simply listing places that its members (representing each state) believed should be preserved, by 1936 Shelford (Committee Chair) was actively leading a fight against a bill introduced in the House of Representatives to open Glacier Bay National Monument to mining; he met with the Park Service in Washington and mailed hundreds of letters to various organizations asking them to send their protests to the Committees on Public Lands of the House and Senate (Bulletin 17(1):3). In 1943, the Committee submitted a number of resolutions to ESA Executive to essentially lobby the government for preservation of specific areas, as well as fight against bills being brought before the House that could threaten specific natural areas (Bulletin 24(1):6–8). In 1944, Shelford wrote in an open letter in the Bulletin (25(2):12–14) about the lack of support and attention by ESA to preservation, compared with its focus on meetings and publications. He cited results of a survey he had conducted (not sanctioned by ESA) that indicated support for his view that ESA's attention to preservation should be on a par with its other activities. He also urged ESA to make constitutional provisions defining the Preservation Committee's “existing and needed autonomy” with the right to solicit gifts and contributions.

Around this time, ESA, along with 10 other organizations, was sent an invitation to join a newly formed Conservation Council, whose purpose was “to bring about the conservation of natural resources in the public interest, particularly animals and plants and their environment” (Bulletin 26(1/2):3). In light of this new initiative and some growing concern about the Preservation Committee's political activism, the ESA Executive recommended that the Committee “refrain from direct action to influence legislation,” pointing out that ESA's role was that of “a research organization and scientific advisor in its field” and that “direct action to influence legislation would be carried on by those organizations participating in the Council whose major capacity is in that field and with whom we shall be able to maintain close working relationships” (Bulletin 26(1/2):5) Subsequently, in 1945, ESA proposed an amendment to the by-law defining the duties of the Committee on the Preservation of Natural Conditions to read: “It shall encourage the preservation of natural conditions by providing information and advice to those interested in securing sound legislation for this purpose but shall not have authority to take direct action designed to influence legislation on its own behalf” (Bulletin 26(3/4) ):12). The mail-in vote on the amendment was 213 for and 115 against; the ramifications of this referendum vote were to play out in the fourth decade (to be reported in the next installment).

Regarding its meetings, ESA continued to organize one or two regional spring/summer meetings in conjunction with AAAS Divisions (equivalent to our current Chapters) and other societies, as well as its annual meetings in late December with AAAS and affiliated societies such as Botanical Society of America, American Society of Zoologists, American Society of Plant Physiologists, Entomological Society of America, Society of American Foresters, and Limnological Society of America. Often symposia were organized jointly with one or more of these societies. ESA annual meetings continued to be held over four days, usually including at least one day set aside for a field trip. A sign of the meetings' growth early in the third decade was the introduction in 1936 of two concurrent sessions in each time slot. Also, the end of the decade saw the use of a central agency for handling all accommodation requests in place of meeting participants making their own hotel reservations. Session titles were still mostly very general (e.g., Animal Ecology, Plant Ecology, General Ecology). Presentation times continued to be left to the presenters and varied from 5 to 30 minutes (although most were 10–15 minutes); as a result, the number of talks in a session varied greatly, from 4 to 13. The Biologists' Smoker continued to be a key social event.

Not too surprisingly, the war had an impact on ESA members and its meetings. In 1942, Treasurer R. E. Shanks had to be replaced as he was “engaged in the armed service of the country,” and one ESA member was reported KIA in 1944. The June 1942 Bulletin announced that AAAS was urging all affiliated societies to include in their annual meeting programs “some material having a bearing on the war.” In response, ESA's 1942 meeting program included two war-related sessions: “Insects and the War” and “General Session for Discussion of Ecological Work in Relation to War Conditions—Ecology and the War.” An example of a talk in the latter session was “The utility of ecological studies in the long range war program.” Unfortunately, by December, AAAS had postponed indefinitely that meeting in response to a request by the Office of Defense Transportation to curtail civilian travel. However, ESA's program was printed as usual in the December Bulletin, with the note that the meeting would be considered as “held within the pages of the Bulletin.” The next annual meeting of ESA wasn't held until September 1944 in Cleveland; the meeting included six sessions with 51 papers, and ~75 people attended one or more sessions. No meeting was held in 1945.

A New Journal for a New Epoch—Elementa: Science of the Anthropocene

The Anthropocene demands new ways of observing, understanding and communicating. To meet this demand, Elementa presents a new venue for highly efficient open-access publication and raises the bar for Anthropocene communication. My experience with this journal has been remarkable: among the best I have ever had. Manuscript production, review, proofing, and publication processes moved swiftly, efficiently and effectively, and reached a broad audience immediately. Elementa demonstrates what is possible when a highly talented and motivated cohort of editors and reviewers are brought together with a great open-access publication platform. For those engaged in work that demands the attention of those concerned with the Anthropocene, and that should be most of us, I give Elementa my highest recommendation.

—Erle C. Ellis, co-author of “Dating the Anthropocene: towards an empirical global history of human transformation of the terrestrial biosphere,” recently featured in “How long have humans dominated the planet?” by David Biello in Scientific American.

Figure 1.

“Why another new journal?” you may ask. “There are journals I always publish in and that I know my colleagues will read.” Occasionally a new journal comes along that deserves some attention. Elementa: Science of the Anthropocene is one of those journals—a unique combination of being nonprofit (funded by BioOne), open-access, university-affiliated, multidisciplinary in nature, and fortified by an outstanding Editorial team.

Elementa has a distinctive intellectual agenda, publishing original research reporting on new knowledge of the Earth's physical, chemical, and biological systems; interactions between human and natural systems; and steps that can be taken to mitigate and adapt to global change. It consists of six inaugural knowledge domains, each led by a prominent Editor-in-Chief:

  1. Atmospheric Science

    Detlev Helmig

    University of Colorado, Boulder

  2. Earth and Environmental Science

    Joel D. Blum

    University of Michigan

  3. Ecology

    Donald R. Zak

    University of Michigan

  4. Ocean Science

    Jody W. Deming

    University of Washington

  5. Sustainable Engineering

    Michael E. Chang

    Georgia Institute of Technology

  6. Sustainability Transitions

    Anne Kapuscinski


Elementa published its first articles in December 2013, including Ecology Commentaries by Bradley Cardinale, F. Stuart Chapin, III, Erica Fernandez, Richard T. Corlett, Shahid Naeem, Daniel Simberloff, Peter Vitousek, and Oliver Chadwick. All articles can be found on elementascience.org.

In addition to Elementa's nonprofit and open-access status, a few things set the journal apart. Close attention is paid to authors, with a dedicated Digital Publishing Manager who guides authors through the submission process and is on hand to answer questions. Significantly, Elementa's site designers and software developers have created a web site and formatted content using cutting-edge technology, ensuring a seamless user experience, including useful features and responsive web design. All articles are also available in PDF, HTML, EPUB, and Mobipocket (and so can be read on an e-reader, tablet, etc.), in addition to machine-readable formats XML and JSON. Elementa is one of the only STM publishers that offers journal articles in such an array of formats. Elementa also has a dedicated Communications Director who works closely with authors to make sure that their work reaches the relevant scientific communities.

Ocean Science Editor-in-Chief and National Academy of Science member, Jody W. Deming, states:

We are past the hour to bring rigorously obtained knowledge of the environment and our interactions with it as directly into the mainstream of local and global thinking as possible. Publish in Elementa to play your part in this urgent societal goal and fully value your role as a researcher in generating new knowledge. Make the results of your labor and insight available to the global community, freely and immediately. Help to educate and, in turn, to advance effective decision-making and problemsolving. Retain intellectual ownership (copyright) throughout the process. Publish in Elementa with confidence that your work will be handled objectively and expeditiously by editors committed to the highest of academic standards, editors who will not claim the ability to pre-judge the value of the work or require that it to be reduced to a “soundbite.”