Letter from the Interim Director
by Bill Clemens
Bill Clemens; photo by Colleen Whitney
Bill is back? Many of you thought he had retired (me too!). In April my retirement was highlighted by a symposium on current trends in paleomammalogy and some wonderful reunion parties—sincere thanks to all of you who made them possible. After taking advantage of the opportunity to restart work on some long postponed research projects, in June I was asked to be Interim Director of UCMP for this academic year; this is proving to be a definite change in pace.
Now a major challenge for all of us is to facilitate the search for a next director of UCMP (I shall keep you posted in future letters). Also, getting back into administration of the museum has provided an opportunity to learn how it has changed since I served as director in the late 1980s.
In the last dozen years or so, under the direction of Jere Lipps and David Lindberg, UCMP has taken advantage of our move to VLSB and the development of its administrative and
curatorial staffs. The spectrum of their research interests, as well as those of our graduate student research associates, has grown remarkably. Just look at the notes on what they did last summer.
In contrast to savoring this wonderful growth, we have had to deal with the challenges imposed by taking a 10% permanent cut in our State funding. Thanks to the wise management of past directors, it was possible to reallocate funds and avoid having to reduce our talented curatorial staff. In part this reflects the emphasis on development of extramural support for many of our research and outreach programs. Also, the museum has greatly benefited from its endowments and gifts. Thank you for your support, it has made a significant difference!

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October, 2003