President's Corner: Still the One
Alvin Simmons, Ph.D.
October 14, 2020
I enjoy diverse genres of music. Certain genres offer great background comfort during long durations of microscope work; others are well suited as audio entertainment during road trips. During this past weekend, I reflected on the songs “Still the One,” by the group Orleans, and “You’re Still the One,” for which Shania Twain received multiple Grammy Awards in 1999. The lyrics of the two songs are different in many ways, but both reflect on imperfect and enduring long-term relationships that parallel ESA and our members.
ESA’s journals are still the one for me. I first heard about the Society through the Annals of the Entomological Society of America; the library at East Carolina University during my undergraduate studies was a subscriber of this journal, and I found it to be useful for my special problem study in biology. Since my first entomology course in 1980, and since I became a member of ESA in 1981, there have been many positive changes. For example, ESA’s operations and the demographics of the membership have positively changed. However, the research quality of papers in ESA’s publications and the passion that members have for entomology have remained high. After all those years, I still enjoy being connected to entomology and ESA. I hope you too feel that you have had or want to have enduring long-term relationships with ESA and with the entomological community. Therefore, it is essential that we continually explore areas where we can make refinements to maintain the Society as a premier scientific organization.
One such area is our drive to continually strive toward inclusivity. Please join in the recognition of National Disability Employment Awareness Month, which is observed in the U.S. during October of each year. The national theme for this year is “Increasing Access and Opportunity.” Did you know that one of the biggest barriers that people with disabilities have is other people? Understanding, recognizing, and embracing disability within our membership and within the entomological community are good ingredients for inclusion. Let’s recognize the disability component of our Society and our discipline as we celebrate “Entomology for All.” Also, as noted in today’s eNews, we welcome and are delighted to have Stacie East as our new Membership and Diversity Program Manager; Stacie will help us along our path of inclusion.
Registration for the 2020 Virtual Annual Meeting remains without a deadline and with the original flat fee up to and throughout the meeting. The program committee continues to refine the program to ensure that this will be a rewarding event for all. To more enhance your meeting experience, recordings of all livestream content will be posted within 72 hours of taking place, and all program content will be available through the end of the conference for your viewing pleasure. I look forward to seeing you virtually soon.
Take care and keep well.
Alvin M. Simmons, Ph.D., FRES
President, Entomological Society of America
Charleston, South Carolina