Journal of Heredity 2014:105(2):147 doi:10.1093/jhered/esu010

Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the American Genetic Association 2014. This work is written by (a) US Government employee(s) and is in the public domain in the US.

Message from the AGA President 2014

Robin Waples President American Genetic Association


Downloaded from at Ernst Mayr Library of the Museum Comp Zoology, Harvard University on June 30, 2015

Dear Members of the American Genetic Association, I am happy to report that the American Genetic Association (AGA) had another outstanding year in 2013. Membership soared by 19%, buoyed by addition of nearly 100 new individual and student members, which reflects the new (but ongoing) policy of providing complimentary one-year memberships to attendees of the annual AGA meeting and AGA-sponsored workshops. The AGA’s flagship publication, Journal of Heredity, made an important change to increase accessibility: all authors can now publish one 8-page article per year without page charges. As in the past, AGA members still receive 10 free pages, and all articles become freely available online 12 months after publication. The AGA welcomes newly-elected officers Katie Peichel (President-elect), Ollie Rider (Secretary) and Lila Fishman, Carlos Machado, and Kelly Zamudio (Council) and thanks outgoing officers Mohamed Noor (past President), Scott Hodges (Secretary), and Adriana Briscoe, Kelly Dyer and Paul Turner (Council) for their long service to the society. Each year the AGA Council awards the Stephen J. O’Brien Award for best student-authored article published in the Journal of Heredity. The award, which comes with a 1-year AGA membership and a $1,500 cash prize, honors Dr. O’Brien, who was the journal’s Editor-In-Chief from 1987–2007. This year, the award was presented to Melody Porlier for her article, “Habitat-linked population genetic differentiation in the blue tit Cyanistes caeruleus” (supervisors, Dr. Dany Garant and Dr. Anne Charmentier). In presenting their recommendation to the Council, the Award Committee had the following comments: “We evaluated whether candidate articles were substantial, novel and synthetic in their approaches. This was a large, nicely written study of fine-scale landscape genetics. The strong sampling strategy and data analysis of multiple markers give clear results of genetic structure linked with habitat preference.” Please urge your students to submit their work to the journal and to identify themselves as candidates for this award by checking the appropriate box during online submission. The AGA also supports a variety of special events conducted around the world, with emphasis on courses, workshops and conferences oriented toward graduate students and post docs. This year, 5 events received full or partial support, with close to $80,000 awarded in total. Any event that would advance the purpose of the Association is potentially eligible for support—please visit the AGA website,, for details and application forms. President Kerry Shaw convened the 2013 AGA Symposium, ‘‘Speciation Continuum: A Discussion on the Origin of Species,’’ at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. Approximately 150 attendees enjoyed the many excellent talks and posters on the subject of speciation. The keynote ‘‘Wilhelmine Key American Genetic Association Distinguished Lecture’’ was given by Dr. Sergey Gavrilets, professor in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and Department of Mathematics at the University of Tennessee. Dr. Gavrilets’ contributions have emphasized questions at the interface of evolution, social science, mathematics and computational science. His insightful research contributes to the unification of speciation theory through synthesis and development of original theoretical models. A selection of papers from the symposium will be published in a special issue of Journal of Heredity later in 2014. Following the symposium, an AGA-sponsored workshop organized by Matt Hare provided practical guidance for 70 participants interested in collection, analysis, and interpretation of population genomics data for nonmodel taxa. Course material can be accessed at Don’t miss the 2014 AGA Presidential Symposium, Evolution and Plasticity: Adaptive responses by species to human-mediated changes to their ecosystems, which will be held 28–29 June at the University of Washington in Seattle, WA. Dr. David Reznick of the University of California, Riverside will give the Wilhelmine Key Distinguished Lecture. A lot has been written on this general topic in the last decade or so, but most treatments have focused on either evolution or plasticity, not both. The symposium will jointly consider the range of adaptive responses populations can make to changes in their ecosystems, and what this means in a practical way to their probability of persistence. Another focus will be on patterns or contrasts across different taxa. Program and registration details are available at the AGA web site, Immediately following the symposium, a two-day (30 June–1 July) workshop on the implications of polyploidy and homeologous recombination on the population genomics of salmonid fishes (salmon, trout, char, whitefish, and grayling) will be convened by Jim Seeb and Fred Allendorf. Attendance will be limited; please contact Jim ([email protected]) or Fred ([email protected]) if you are interested. Sincerely,

Message from the AGA President 2014.

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