Greetings to all of you, and thank you for your vote of confidence in
me as your new Chair of the Division of Neurobiology. I will do my
best to serve your interests within SICB and to encourage the growth
of DNB. Please let me know what you would like to see accomplished in
DNB at firstname.lastname@example.org
; I will give you my ideas in this letter
and in direct communiqués via email.
First, as part of SICB, I think we offer a wonderful opportunity for
the large part of the neuroscience community that shares our interest
in the ecological and evolutionary contexts in which the nervous
systems of animals work. It seems to me that this community is not
well served at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience
(except at the J.B. Johnston meeting), and is served only every
three years at the Neuroethology Congress. Beyond these meetings,
there are the regional Nerve Net Meetings which, wonderful as they
are, serve small and local communities. I would not want to
displace these meetings, but I would argue that a larger and more
vigorous DNB presence at the annual SICB meeting would benefit
To this end, I would like to commend Rich Satterlie for organizing the
"Recent Developments in Neurobiology" symposium (see Rich's letter
below) at our next meeting in Anaheim. It should prove highly
attractive to DNB members and to the larger neurobiology community at
this next meeting and in future years. Moreover, its organization,
with a lead speaker and her/his student/postdoc, serves our interest
and mission of promoting younger scientists. This and the other two
symposia (Neural Mechanisms of Orientation and Navigation' and
`Responding to the World with a Little Nervous System: Unique Models
for Studying Perception and Behavior'; again, see Rich's letter below)
should enable us to attract a good crowd, but it doesn't happen
automatically. So please spread the word about these symposia and the
opportunities for young people to give a good talk to a friendly and
Also to this end, I plan to reach out to the International Society for
Neuroethology and to the J.B. Johnston Club to determine how we can
profit ourselves and our membership through mutual affiliation. SICB
has a tradition of such affiliation (viz. the Crustacean Society) that
has proved mutually beneficial, and Martin Feder, SICB (now past)
President, encouraged us to pursue discussions. If any of you have
close ties to these societies or ideas about how best to approach
them, please let me know.
Finally, I would encourage you to submit your work to the society
journal. Although its name, American Zoologist, may soon change, your
papers will still receive the same warm welcome and close attention
that we've come to expect from one of our own, John Edwards.
At the Chicago meeting we had a good representation of the DNB
group. We hope that it will grow even stronger next year for the
California meeting. Contact your Californian colleagues to encourage
them to present work from their labs at our next meeting, which of
course would not be so costly in travel for them.
We had three students to win awards at the Chicago meeting. There was
a tie for Best Student Poster Presentation (Tom Pirtle & Wayne Korzan)
and 1st place on Best Student Slide Presentation went to Mark A. Frye.
Each will receive $100 as their award. Congratulations to these three
Next year, we hope that more students and postdoctoral fellows will
participate our division's competition.
Sometime this summer there will be elections for the position of
Secretary and for the Program Officer with our Division. People that
are interested in running for these positions should contact the me
ASAP so that we can arrange to have platform profiles compiled and
distributed in the next news letter.
With the Anaheim meeting next up, we have an active and exciting set
of symposia. Our division is sponsoring two: "Neural Mechanisms of
Orientation and Navigation", organized by Jim Murray, and "Recent
Developments in Neurobiology", organized by the Division officers.
Also, we are co-sponsoring entitled, "Responding to the World with a
Little Nervous System: Unique Models for Studying Perception and
Behavior", organized by Frederick Prete and Peggy Hill. The "Recent
Developments" symposium is particularly exciting, since it will allow
us to invite five exceptional neurobiologists from the West Coast,
with each person present piggy-back talk with a junior member of
his/her laboratory. The evening of the symposium will include a
Division social. This is a multi-year program that is supported by the
Society, and I would like to express our collective thanks to the
Society leadership for this support.
Although it is getting close to the absolute deadline, there is still
time to forward a symposium proposal for the Toronto meeting. Also,
please be thinking of potential speakers from the Toronto area for the
"Recent Developments" symposium. Symposium proposals and nominations
of speakers for Toronto can be forwarded to me at:
We look forward to seeing
you in Anaheim. We will soon have our final list of speakers for the
"Recent Developments" symposium, which we will publish in the next
newsletter. Please tell your colleagues about the meeting, and
particularly about our exciting symposia.