New Executive Director Is Named
Fred Whitney, Selection Committee Chair
The search committee has completed its work culminating in the teleconference interview of three finalist (from a pool of eleven applicants). The recommendation was e-mailed to the Board of Directors and a majority of them have voted for the choice of LAURA GRANT, member of the Toronto, Canada, Chapter of the Rhododendron Society of Canada. Laura brings the enthusiasm and "can/will do attitude" which is intrinsic to this position. Her active participation in and publication for several botanical organizations and her TV/radio exposures make her a very viable representative of the American Rhododendron Society and a strong advocate for the genus Rhododendron. Many facets of the transition are in process with the plan to "close" the OARS office during the month of August with all future business transactions (2004-2005) to be handled through Laura commencing 1 September 2004. Dee has graciously agreed to support the Board meeting activities associated with the Fall Western Regional Conference and support Laura throughout the coming year as different milestones/deadlines come due.
The entire membership of the ARS expresses its deepest gratitude for Dee's seven years of dedication to our operation and wishes her well as she "moves forward with new endeavors" in the future. Thanks Dee for a magnificent, advancing operation on behalf of the American Rhododendron Society.