The Southern California Academy of Sciences is an important part of the scientific community of southern California, and it is an honor and a privilege to serve as its new President. Over the next two years, the Board and I plan to enhance the visibility, membership, and advocacy of the Academy, which is entering its 126th year.

In 2017, SCAS will break from tradition and host its Annual Meeting as a one-day event on the campus of Santa Monica College on Friday, April 28 – so save the date! Symposia themes for 2017 are: Freshwater Systems; Rainforest and Tropical Ecology; and Marine Coastal Ecology. As usual, the Contributed Paper presentations will include a variety of topics ranging from Parasitology to Marine and Terrestrial Ecology. We will then cap off the one-day event with a Poster Session that will include, for the first time, our Junior Academy members.

If you have scientific papers to publish, please remember that the SCAS Bulletin publishes papers by members without page charges. The goal of the Bulletin is to report on research activities of SCAS members, scientific research conducted in southern California, and research that is of interest to the membership.

Thank you to outgoing SCAS President Julianne Passarelli for her hard work and steady leadership. Special thanks also to longstanding Board member Ann Dalkey, who, after many years of service to the Academy, has provided invaluable perspective and structure to the Board. Finally, a big thanks to the entire SCAS membership, which includes junior academy participants, university students, environmental professionals, and scholars, whose continued support make it possible to further the goals of our Academy, as well as promote fellowship amongst the southern California scientific community.

Congratulations and welcome to three newly appointed Board members: Mia Adreani of California State University Northridge, Kristy Forsgren of California State University Fullerton, and Karina Johnston of the Bay Foundation. Kristy and Karina also have agreed to serve as officers (Corresponding Secretary and Treasurer, respectively), as has longtime Board member Lisa Collins (Vice President). We are grateful for their support. Are you interested in joining the Board – if so, let me know!

In case we haven’t met yet, I have been an active member of the Academy and joined the Board in 2012. As an Associate Professor (Teaching) of Environmental Studies in the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences, my teaching is focused on marine environmental science and sustainability, which include hands-on learning and research experiences in the classroom and temperate and tropical field locations.

I believe the research, scholarship, and professional development opportunities offered by SCAS can greatly enhance the future career choices of students at all levels of their academic career.

Thank you for your continued participation in and support of SCAS! We hope to see you at the April 2017 Annual Meeting!

David W. Ginsburg, President