Scott Sillett named Editor-in-chief of The Auk: Ornithological Advances, a journal of the American Ornithological Society

The American Ornithological Society (AOS) announces the appointment of T. Scott Sillett as the 19theditor-in-chief of the international journal, The Auk: Ornithological Advances, one of two peer-reviewed journals published by the AOS. Dr. Sillett brings a powerful combination of scientific breadth and accomplishment, editorial experience, and vision for the journal at the global level. He will begin his position this August during the journal’s 134th year of publication.

Dr. Sillett was appointed by the AOS Council to lead the journal based on his many strengths, including his innovative strategies to address the shifting landscape for scholarly publishing and his solid grounding in the ornithological research communities across the Americas. Sillett is a Research Wildlife Biologist at the Smithsonian National Zoological Park and Conservation Biology Institute and is a Fellow of the AOS.

“I am honored to be chosen as the next editor-in-chief of The Auk, and look forward to working with the AOS to continue the journal’s legacy of excellence and innovation,” said Sillett. He is committed to work with colleagues to elevate the journal’s international recognition for its cutting edge science involving birds.

Sillett will place a high priority on raising the global profile of ornithological research by recruiting editorial board members for The Auk from emerging research communities.

“The international ornithological communityis increasingly producing exciting ornithological science that The Aukis uniquely positioned to make widely accessible. We are excited to see a significant increase in ornithological studies and international collaboration in the Americas particularly, but also throughout the world. The AOS can ensure this quality research is distributed widely,” said Kathy Martin, president of the AOS.

The Auk: Ornithological Advances publishes original research advancing the fundamental scientific knowledge of broad biological concepts (e.g., ecology, evolution, behavior, physiology, and genetics) through studies of birds, with emphasis on novel, timely, and broadly significant research for publication. The Auk thrived while under the editorship of Dr. Mark Hauber from 2013 to present. The journal consistently tops the 5‐yr‐average journal impact factor scores among 24 ornithology journals worldwide.

About the American Ornithological Society
The American Ornithological Society (AOS) is the largest, most influential ornithological society in the world. The society provides exemplary leadership in ornithological research, a rigorous scientific basis for the conservation of birds, and invests more in research awards and direct support of students and early professionals than any other society devoted to ornithology. The AOS publishes two international journals—The Auk: Ornithological Advances, and The Condor: Ornithological Applications—which have a history of the highest scientific impact rankings among ornithological journals worldwide, and the book series, Studies in Avian Biology. The Society’s checklists serve as the accepted authority for scientific nomenclature and English names of birds in North, Middle, and South America. The AOS is also a partner in the online publication of The Birds of North America with the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology. For more information, see www.americanornithology.org.

Faces of AOS: Olivia Jo Utley Bio

• Email:
utleyoli@msu.edu

• Twitter Handle:
@thewildologist

• Instagram:
@thewildologist

• My position with AOS:
Membership Committee member

• My current full-time title and institution:
PhD student at Michigan State University

• My current career stage:
Graduate Student

• My lineage of mentors/labs:
In undergrad I worked under Dr. David Westneat for 3 years at University of Kentucky, and I now work with Dr. Catherine Lindell at MSU

• #badlyexplainyourjob:
I put up next boxes in orchards and hope “good” birds come. Then I use a giant boat battery and a camera to do surveillance and see if the “good” birds chase the “bad” birds out of the orchards.

• My favorite bird and why:
This is so so so tough, because I can find a reason to love every one of them, but I’m gonna go with American Kestrels because they’re so small and yet such feisty birds. They’re fighters and I love it!

• I am involved with AOS because:
Because I love and research birds and I think it’s important to connect with others who do as well to progress ornithology and the overlapping fields of research. Science is nothing if it’s not being shared and pushed forward.

• The best part about being a member of AOS is:
Connecting with people who are as passionate as you are about wildlife and science!

• Birds are important to me because:
I think they are an amazingly unique group of organisms and are vital to the ecological functions of this planet, on top of just being very cool creatures and fun to work with.

• Advice I have to offer a student (master’s level or younger) in ornithology:
Get involved in everything. Like yesterday.

• One ornithology question or problem I would like to solve or see solved:
How humans can coexist with birds with minimal negative impact on them. Also why have AMKE’s been on the decline for 40 years?

 

Faces of AOS: Danielle Belleny Bio

• Email:
ybelleny@gmail.com

• Twitter Handle:
@bellzetal

• My position with AOS:
Communications Committee member

• My current full-time title and institution:
Graduate Research Assistant, Tarleton State University

• My current career stage:
Graduate Student

• My lineage of mentors/labs:
Caesar Kleberg Wildlife Research Institute (undergraduate)
Tarleton State University (graduate) mentors – Dr. Heather Mathewson, Dr. Jeff Breeden, Dr. John Tomecek, Dr. Thomas Wayne Schwertner, Dr. Jim Giocomo

• #badlyexplainyourjob:
I give bobwhite cute necklaces that allow me to secretly track their birdy habits. They lead me to their nests where I further invade their privacy by putting up surveillance cameras (to watch for predators, totally not a creep).

• My favorite bird and why:
Shoebill – Terrifying and glowering swamp bosses that have razor-sharp bills. They eat monitor lizards and baby crocodiles… that means shoebills are dinosaur-eating dinosaurs. What’s not to love?

• I am involved with AOS because:
To be involved with avian research and meet colleagues

• The best part about being a member of AOS is:
Being able to join committees and help improve the AOS experience for other members

• Birds are important to me because:
I especially like to reflect on the beauty and personality birds add to an ecosystem. Birds are very charismatic and when I visit new places there is a unique energy provided by the species present.

• Advice I have to offer a student (master’s level or younger) in ornithology:
You’re capable of more than you give yourself credit for

• One ornithology question or problem I would like to solve or see solved:
Ways to reduce avian fatalities from renewable energy structures

 

Faces of AOS: Tom Sherry Bio

• Email:
tsherry@tulane.edu

• Twitter Handle:
@ThomasWSherry

• Website/Blog/Etc:
http://www.tulane.edu/~Sherry27/

• My position with AOS:
AOS Fellow and President Elect (2020)

• My current full-time title and institution:
Professor, Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and New Day Professor III and Siegel Professor in Social Entrepreneurship, Phyllis M. Taylor Center for Social Innovation and Design Thinking Tulane University

• My current career stage:
Senior Professional

• My lineage of mentors/labs:
Undergraduate research, MS degree, and post-doc with Richard T. Holmes, Dartmouth College.
Ph.D. UCLA with advisor Henry A. Hespenheide

• #badlyexplainyourjob:
I study how birds get along with same kinds and with other kinds of birds, which is better than humans get along, which is why I study how to protect birds and their homes.

• My favorite bird and why:
Every bird species I’ve studied. However, I have a large photo in my office of a Cuban Tody with a large insect in its beak, and another of a Cocos Finch probing in a hibiscus flower.

• I am involved with AOS because:
I was hooked on science and birds doing field work as an undergraduate and attending my first scientific conference (Winnipeg AOU, 1975). Most of my research and conservation activities center on birds, and AOS is both a great fit and a great opportunity to work with others to pass on my love of birds and of nature.

• The best part about being a member of AOS is:
The journals (even when they don’t accept my manuscripts), the meetings to network and catch up on cutting edge research, and increasingly the awesome website.

• Birds are important to me because:
I know birds better than any other taxon because I started out watching them at an early age to entertain myself in the woods (growing up summers in the Adirondack Mts., NY), and birds provide unlimited opportunities for science and conservation: migratory birds are fairly unique among migratory animals, tropical birds are poorly understood, and birds are strategic for conservation because of so many bird enthusiasts globally.

• Advice I have to offer a student (master’s level or younger) in ornithology:
Get lab and field experience as early and often as you can. Then follow-up on your observations that don’t fit prevailing explanations.

• One ornithology question or problem I would like to solve or see solved:
Why are so many tropical species specialized ecologically and evolutionarily?

• Fun random fact about myself:
I played fiddle with contradance bands while a graduate student and post-doc.

• Something else birdy I’d like to share:
I look forward to listening to anyone with ideas on how to strengthen the AOS and its impacts, particularly in the Western Hemisphere.

Faces of AOS: Auriel M. V. Fournier Bio

• Email:
aurielfournier@gmail.com

• Twitter Handle:
@RallidaeRule

• Website/Blog/Etc:
aurielfournier.github.io

• My position with AOS:
Early Career Committee Member – Professional Development SubCommittee

• My current full-time title and institution:
Postdoctoral Research Associate – Mississippi State University, Coastal Research and Extension Center

• My current career stage:
Postdoc

• My lineage of mentors/labs:
BS in Wildlife Ecology and Management at Michigan Technological University, worked in the Joseph Bump and David Flaspohler Labs
PhD in Biology in the Arkansas Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, University of Arkansas, David Krementz Lab
Postdoc with Drs. Jim Lyons and Mark Woodrey, Mississippi State University, Coastal Research and Extension

• #badlyexplainyourjob:
I put numbers to how people who are about birds feel about those birds and use those numbers to help people who care about birds make better choices.

• My favorite bird and why:
Common Loon was my original favorite bird, and I still adore them. Also, all rails.

• I am involved with AOS because:
AOS has become my home professional society, providing a place to be apart of the larger ornithology community as I move through my career.

• The best part about being a member of AOS is:
Being apart of an organization that is open and willing to grow and change as the needs of its membership grow and change, not every professional group is willing to do that, and it makes it a much more rewarding, welcoming and enjoyable place to be.

• Birds are important to me because:
Birds are a great bridge between people and their environment, they capture our imagination, are a source of wonder and challenge our sense of place. Birds are important to me because they are different things to different people, and can be used to help everyone connect more with the world around them.

• Advice I have to offer a student (master’s level or younger) in ornithology:
Don’t be afraid of hard things or hard problems. Bring your own unique take to hard problems, you’re perspective might provide just the answer that ornithology has been looking for!

• One ornithology question or problem I would like to solve or see solved:
How can we make entering the ornithology accessible to everyone regardless of background, experience or financial resources? Right now many ways of entering ornithology require unpaid or very low paying work, which is not accessible to those without financial resources and that is just not acceptable.

• Fun random fact about myself:
I am basically black rail repellent. Do you not want to see a black rail? Bring me with you. (n=11)