Results of the 2018 Election

Posted on by ASN

Susan Kalisz, President 2020

My interests are in evolutionary biology and ecology.  My research focuses on the evolution of  mating system and the role of mating system shifts in speciation in plants, mutualism and mutualism disruption by invasive species, and demographic and population modeling. These research projects intersect in my interest in deeper questions about the effects of human’s actions across the globe in altering the tempo and mode of evolution, and the sustainability and conservation of biodiversity. I received my Bachelor’s of Science degree from the University of Michigan, where I was inspired by the dazzling diversity, forms and functions of plants. I received my Masters and PhD degrees from the University of Chicago, where I learned how the interaction of ecology and evolutionary forces shaped those dazzling forms. Directly from Chicago, I took a faculty position at Michigan State University where I became a tenured associate professor, then moved to the University of Pittsburgh where I became a full professor in 2001. I joined the University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UTK) in 2015 as Professor and Head of the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology. I was invited to serve as program director in the Division of Environmental Biology at the National Science Foundation (2009-2010) and I currently serve on the Faculty of 1000.

I co-led two National Evolution Synthesis Center (NESCent) Working Groups, and served as a member of the NSF microMORPH: Microevolutionary Molecular and Organismic Research in Plant History Research Coordination Network Steering Committee 2010-2017, the Botanical Society of America Merit Awards Committee 2011-2014, and as associate editor for the journals Evolution, Journal of Ecology and The American Naturalist. As a graduate student, I joined ASN (loved to discuss graphs with unlabeled axes), and while serving as one of three Editors for The American Naturalist (2012-2015), I advocated for instating the double blind manuscript review process that the journal now employs. My experiences in a faculty mentoring matrix program at UTK and graduate student mentoring and diversity programs at U Pittsburgh and UTK, in working groups, and my life experiences, reinforce my belief in the power of human networks to increase individual and group success and happiness. I would work to develop of new mentoring opportunities for ASN scientists at all career levels that foster their professional and personal goals and help to build a stronger, more inclusive community within ASN.

Meghan Duffy, Vice President 2020

My research focuses on the ecology and evolution of infectious diseases, particularly in aquatic systems. I have studied the causes and consequences of rapid evolution of hosts in response to disease outbreaks, as well as the effects of food webs on disease. More recently, my work has begun to focus on the impacts of global change on infectious diseases, as well as on multihost-multipathogen interactions. I received my PhD from Michigan State University and did a postdoc at the University of Wisconsin before beginning my first faculty position at Georgia Tech; I am now an Associate Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Michigan. I received the President’s Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers from President Obama and the Ecological Society of America’s Mercer Award (for a paper published in AmNat!), and am currently a Public Engagement Fellow with AAAS.

I have been an Associate Editor for the American Naturalist since 2015 and served on the American Naturalist Editor-in-Chief Selection committee in 2016. I was the Vice-Chair and then Chair of the Ecological Society of America’s (ESA) Aquatic Ecology Section, was a member of ESA’s Grants and Fellowships committee, and am currently the chair of ESA’s Mercer Award subcommittee. I am a co-creator of DiversifyEEB (which aims to highlight ecologists and evolutionary biologists who are women and/or underrepresented minorities) and of EEBMentorMatch (which aims to provide grad school and fellowship applicants with feedback on their application materials). I also serve on the Advisory Board of 500 Women Scientists, which aims to transform leadership, diversity, and public engagement in science.

The ASN website notes that the “American Society of Naturalists emphasizes the value of interdisciplinary research and collaborations between diverse biologists to achieve conceptual unification across the biological sciences.” This is exactly why I want to serve the ASN – there is much to be gained by integrating across ecology, evolutionary biology, and behavior, and it is imperative that we work to make science more diverse and inclusive. My planned symposium would focus on insights gained from system-based research, including work on well-established systems as well as on more recently established systems, integrating across ecology, evolution, and behavior.

Tadashi Fukami, Secretary 2019-2021

I study ecological and evolutionary community assembly, with a focus on understanding when and why the structure and function of communities are contingent on the history of species immigration. Over the past 15 years, I have used experimental, theoretical, and observational methods, involving bacteria, protists, fungi, plants, and animals. Currently, microbes that inhabit floral nectar are my primary study system. I earned a bachelor's degree from Waseda University in 1996, a master's degree from the University of Tokyo in 1998, and a PhD from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, in 2003. I was a postdoc at Landcare Research, New Zealand (2003-2005) and an Assistant Professor at the University of Hawaii at Manoa (2006-2008) before joining the Stanford University faculty in 2008. I received NSF CAREER, OPUS, and Dimensions of Biodiversity awards, and a Science Prize for Inquiry-Based Instruction from AAAS.

I have served as a handling editor (Ecology Letters, Oikos, and PLoS ONE), a symposium organizer (ESA), a review panel member (NSF), and a graduate student representative (University of Tennessee EEB Dept; though a long time ago!). I attended two of the past stand-alone ASN conferences and have published three papers in the American Naturalist (Wittmann and Fukami, forthcoming; Fukami et al. 2017; Olito and Fukami 2009), served as the external reviewer for manuscripts submitted to the journal, and had my graduate student (Devin Leopold) receive an ASN Student Research Award. Serving as ASN Secretary would be a great opportunity to contribute to the society that has published many of the papers that inspired and influenced my research deeply. The stimulating, friendly, and informal atmosphere at the ASN stand-alone conferences that I attended has reinforced my feeling that this is the society that I would like to consider my intellectual home, and I would be excited to help the society continue to thrive.