John Toll, SETAC North America President
One of the most gratifying things that the president of the SETAC North America Board of Directors gets to do is award Presidential Citations. I am going to use my valedictory column to recognize individuals whose work was lauded by their peers and rewarded with Presidential Citations, and to thank all who provided me with great recommendations about citation recipients. If the numbers are an indication, then we had an excellent year. Fifty members will receive SETAC North America Presidential Citations at the SETAC North America 39th Annual Meeting, which will be held from 4–8 November in Sacramento, California. When you see these people, please let them know how much you appreciate their work on behalf of SETAC North America and its members.
Before getting to the citations, I want to tell you about three of the initiatives that this year’s Board of Directors has worked on that will lead to exciting growth and development of SETAC North America.
- Development Programs: Under the leadership of Eric Van Genderen and Beth Power, we conducted a thorough review of our development programs, both fundraising (treasure) and volunteerism (talent). We can say with confidence that SETAC has the blueprint for a bright future. We will have the resources to expand our programs and services to meet needs of the academic, business and regulatory enterprises that need an organization, like SETAC, to forge solutions to intractable environmental problems, more than ever before. By serving those organizations, we will serve you, our members. We have exciting times ahead of us and want you to be a part of it. Please reach out to any of the members of your Board of Directors, any of the leaders of our committees, or any of the leaders of our Interest Groups. There is a role for you that matches your interests, abilities and available time. The more actively you participate, the stronger SETAC North America becomes. Jump aboard, and help build our bright future!
- Global Certification: The five Geographic Units are collaborating on plans for a global certification program in environmental risk assessment, and we intend to get the last of the details hammered out in Sacramento. This certification program builds on the SETAC Europe Certification of Environmental Risk Assessors (CRA) program, and the work, spearheaded by Karsten Liber, to create a North American certification program. An independent 501(c)6 certification board will be formed to run the certification program. We are working to finalize a request for proposals in Sacramento. We hope to select a management group to run the certification board at or before the SETAC Europe 29th Annual Meeting, which will be held from 26–30 May in Helsinki, Finland. The first certification examination by the new Board could be administered in 2020 or 2021. This is an exciting opportunity for SETAC to be the guiding force behind a new standard of technical professionalism in applied environmental problem-solving.
- Leveraging Technology: We have kindled a commitment to use today’s communication technologies to better serve our present and future professional colleagues who can’t travel to our annual meetings. We envision virtual inter-regional chapter meetings, where, for example, award-winning presenters from each of the regional chapters can reach an audience that spans North America, building new contacts and sharing ideas on a grand scale. We see the promise of using that technology to bring scientists into primary and secondary school classrooms. The interest in SETAC North America in performing outreach services is strong, and we will build the capacity to deliver those services. By doing so, we will extend our influence on public discourse by bringing voices for science into our communities in new and exciting ways.
I’ll close by saying thank you to the members of the SETAC staff and the 2018 SETAC North America Board of Directors who supported me throughout the year. Thank you. I hope I was able to help you as much as you helped me. And now, here are the recipients of this year’s SETAC North America Presidential Citations.
Tom’s deep commitment to SETAC North America is exemplified by his five years of service on the Board of Directors, which included serving as President in 2017. Tom was a principal driving force behind the thoughtful deliberative process that resulted in North American students getting the right to vote in SETAC North America elections and the president of the North American Student Advisory Council (NASAC) getting a vote on the Board of Directors.
Sarah’s contribution to this year’s Board of Directors Executive Committee has been deeply appreciated. Her commitment to SETAC North America, and notably to SETAC North America’s early career professionals, has been exceptional.
Kristin found multiple ways to serve SETAC in 2018. Most importantly, she volunteered to serve as the liaison from the Early Career Committee to the Development Committee. This is a critical position, and by serving, Kristin is sure to make a positive difference in SETAC North America’s future. Kristin also volunteered to reach out to lapsed members, helping our membership committee learn why they’ve allowed their memberships to lapse, and in some cases, encourage them to renew. Kristin also took the initiative to start SETAC’s early career social media accounts.
Bryan exemplifies sustained commitment to SETAC. This year, he added leadership of the SETAC North America Student Advocacy Committee to his already long list of services to SETAC.
Tim, another exemplar of sustained commitment to SETAC, stepped up five years ago with Bill Goodfellow to serve as Globe editor-in-chief. This year, they oversaw the switch to a fantastic new format befitting one of the top electronic periodicals in the business.
Curtis is being recognized for another year of exceptional work on the SETAC North America Science Committee.
Doug is being recognized for his years of service to SETAC North America, working hard, mostly behind the scenes, for two three-year terms as SETAC North America Treasurer. This is an important job that often goes unappreciated. Doug did it very well.
Kay is being recognized for her work as the new chairperson of the SETAC North America Meetings Committee.
Eric Van Genderen
Eric simultaneously co-chaired the Sacramento Program Committee, chaired the SETAC North America Development Committee through a very important and challenging period, and served on the SETAC North America Board of Directors. His contribution to SETAC North America in 2018 was exceptional.
Bill has already served in SETAC governance for a decade, and for the past five years as a Globe editor-in-chief, so when SETAC North America asked Bill to serve another three-year term as SETAC Treasurer, it would have been understandable if he’d said no. He didn’t though, he said yes, and we’re grateful to him for his long-standing commitment to SETAC.
Meg is being commended for leading the effort to survey SETAC North America’s early career membership. Early career is a time when staying connected to SETAC can be difficult. The survey will help us better define and understand barriers to and perceived benefits of SETAC participation and identify actionable ways to improve the SETAC experience for early career scientists. This contribution to the long-term success of SETAC is appreciated.
Sharon is being recognized for going above and beyond her duties as vice chair of the Early Career Committee. Early Career is an important committee, and Sharon’s preparation to lead it will serve SETAC well in 2019 and beyond.
Markus is being recognized for great leadership of the SETAC North America Science Committee while fulfilling his responsibilities as a member of the Board of Directors.
Andrew is being recognized for representing SETAC North America at a recent meeting of the Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS). SACNAS is dedicated to fostering the success of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans, from college students to professionals, in attaining advanced degrees, careers and positions of leadership in STEM. SETAC North America aspires to partner with SACNAS in the coming years.
Wendy is being recognized for continuing to play a leadership role in SETAC after completing her term on the SETAC North America Board of Directors by taking on the leadership of the Senior Resource Group in 2018.
Ruth is being recognized for her steadfast leadership of the SETAC North America Endowment Fund Board of Trustees.
Latonya is being recognized for her efforts to form a SETAC North America Inclusive Diversity Sub-Committee and for her work on the inclusive diversity event for SETAC Sacramento.
Mark is being recognized for the valuable advice he has offered that has been invaluable to the development of SETAC’s global environmental risk assessment certification program, which we intend to launch in 2019.
Alice is being recognized for her contributions as vice-chair of the SETAC North America Student Advocacy Committee.
Nile is being recognized for his work as chair of the SETAC North America Training and Education Committee.
Mason is being recognized for leading the Early Career Committee’s sub-committee responsible for providing early career travel awards for the SETAC North America annual meeting
Emma is being recognized for her work on the ad hoc committee on Students and SETAC North America Governance. The ad hoc committee was charged with examining three issues concerning equitability in students’ participation in SETAC North America governance. Its feedback informed the Board of Directors’ deliberations and buttressed their decisions to move forward on three issues:
- Giving North American student members full voting privileges in SETAC North America
- Giving the NASAC representative to the SETAC North America Board of Directors full voting privileges on the Board of Directors
- Using the SETAC North America general election to select NASAC’s representative to the Board of Directors
Two of those proposed changes required amendments to the SETAC North America constitution. The ad hoc committee helped create the ballot language. It also helped with outreach, penning an article in the July 2018 SETAC Globe on the ad hoc committee’s deliberative role in examining the issues and advising the Board. The proposed amendments were approved overwhelmingly by the SETAC North America membership in September 2018.
Jim is being recognized for his work to revitalize the Ohio Valley Regional Chapter of SETAC North America.
Scott, together with Mike Murray and Renata Raina-Fulton, is being recognized for his leadership of the Wildlife Toxicology Peer Review Sub-Committee.
Bernalyn is being recognized for leading the Women in SETAC Sub-Committee and its activities at the upcoming SETAC North America annual meeting in Sacramento.
Alex is being recognized for his leadership of NASAC.
Liz is being recognized for her work as chairperson of the 2018 Young Environmental Scientists Meeting in Madison, Wisconsin. Liz and her co-chair Sara Nason did great planning work that resulted in a successful meeting under trying circumstances.
Mike, together with Scott Lynn and Renata Raina-Fulton, is being recognized for his leadership of the Wildlife Toxicology Peer Review Sub-Committee.
Sara is being recognized for her work as co-chairperson of the 2018 Young Environmental Scientists Meeting in Madison, Wisconsin. Sara and Liz Miller together did great planning work that resulted in a successful meeting under trying circumstances.
Frannie is being recognized for organizing the Buddy System for the SETAC North America annual meeting in Sacramento. Frannie went beyond her duties as the chair of this group. She created marketing materials and arranged to have information posted via social media. She will also be speaking at the first Buddy Program Meet and Greet, which will be held at SETAC Sacramento from 4:30 p.m.–6:00 p.m on Sunday, 4 November in room 312 at the convention center.
Lisa is being recognized for her work on the program committee for the 2018 annual meeting in Sacramento. Lisa led several initiatives that aim to promote exposure to SETAC and opportunities for non-members. Lisa developed the motivation for, design and communications related to the Thursday professional training courses tailored for local government audiences. In addition, Lisa nominated and secured science fiction author Kim Stanley Robinson to be our plenary session speaker on Wednesday afternoon at the annual meeting. Lisa has carried her energy from the program committee into her newest role as the chairperson of the SETAC North America Meetings Committee. Her efforts for Sacramento and beyond will make a lasting impression on SETAC North America, and she deserves full recognition from the Board of Directors.
Lisa is being recognized for her effective work in her first year of her term on the SETAC North America Board of Directors and for her work to raise funds for SETAC’s global environmental risk assessment certification program, which we intend to launch in 2019.
David is being recognized for his work on the ad hoc committee on Students and SETAC North America Governance.
Blair is being recognized for her outstanding leadership and enthusiasm in supporting and guiding the Early Career Committee in its first official year.
Beth is being recognized for her leadership of the SETAC North America Development Committee over the past two years. Without Beth’s dedication to and leadership for the Development Committee, much of the work conducted over the last two years would not have been possible. Her organizational skills and coordination of tasks were instrumental in bringing all elements of the investigation together for the 2018 annual report to the SETAC North America Board of Directors. Beth’s impact on the future of Development within SETAC North America will ultimately influence sustainable business models that affect future directions for fundraising and volunteerism.
Juliska is being recognized for her work on the ad hoc Committee on Students and SETAC North America Governance.
Ryan is being recognized for his dedicated work over the past two years on the SETAC North America Awards Committee. His nomination statement describes him as, “…always helpful, thinking outside of the box on (nominations) and to make the award program stand out.”
Renata, together with Scott Lynn and Mike Murray, is being recognized for her leadership of the Wildlife Toxicology Peer Review Sub-Committee.
Sue is being recognized for her work during her first year on the SETAC North America Board of Directors for her committed work as a liaison to the SETAC North America Career Development Committee, NASAC, Science Committee and for her work in support of the SETAC Mexico Regional Chapter.
Peter is being recognized along with Tristan Smith for leading the effort to plan and fund the Early Career Social at the annual meeting in Sacramento. Early career professionals, be sure to say thanks to Peter and Trystan at the Early Career Social on Tuesday at SETAC Sacramento!
Alan is being recognized for exceptional, sustained support to the SETAC North America Science Committee.
Chris is being recognized for his work on the ad hoc committee on Students and SETAC North America Governance.
Tamar is being recognized for her outstanding performance as SETAC Scientific Affairs Manager. Tamar has done an outstanding job since joining the SETAC North America staff. We are glad to have her.
Tristan is being recognized along with Peter Rose for leading the effort to plan and fund the Early Career Social at the annual meeting in Sacramento. Early career professionals, be sure to say thanks to Trystan and Peter at the Early Career Social!
Trina Von Stackelberg
Trina took on a three-year term as SETAC North America treasurer after completing her regular three-year term on the Board of Directors. The treasurer plays a vital role in SETAC North America that often seems to go unnoticed. We noticed. Thanks Trina!
Jane is being recognized for her work on the ad hoc committee on Students and SETAC North America Governance.
Jeff is being recognized for his outstanding service on the SETAC North America Board of Directors for the past two years. Whenever there is a job to be done, Jeff is willing and able to help. His can-do attitude is inspiring, and we are lucky to have him on the Board for another year.
Laura is being recognized for her work on the Buddy System for the SETAC North America annual meeting in Sacramento and for all the other work she does for our committees. The nominator for this citation noted, “I’m hardly on a committee call that Laura isn’t participating on and providing valuable input and help.”
Dan is being recognized for planning and chairing the outstanding SETAC North America Focused Topic Meeting “High Throughput-Screening and Environmental Risk Assessment,” which was held in April 2018. Dan has been a leader in advancing the field of predictive toxicology and has been generously sharing his expertise and his time with SETAC. A review paper summarizing the findings of the focused topic meeting has already been accepted for publication in Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry.
Kristie is being recognized for her work on the ad hoc committee on Students and SETAC North America Governance and for her role as an advocate for students on the SETAC North America Board of Directors for the past three years.
Author’s contact information: JohnT@windwardenv.com