AMERICAN FEDERATION OF MINERALOGICAL SOCIETIES
Volume 57, Number 1
IN THIS ISSUE
from Marve Starbuck, AFMS President
This is my first President's message...
"What is the Scholarship Foundation and how does it function?" seems to be a question in a lot of peoples minds. We receive a large number of newsletters each month and some of them have some pretty far out concepts of what the AFMS Scholarship Foundation is all about. I realize that this will be redundant to a lot of you, but for the ones that have questions, I feel it warrants space in this newsletter.
ORGANIZATION: The AFMS Scholarship Foundation, authorized in the Bylaws of the American Federation of Mineralogical Societies was incorporated as a Minnespota Corporation on March 17, 1964. Its members are the officers of the AFMS, totaling eighteen in number. Its members elect its Board of Directors. The management of the Foundation is vested in this board.
PURPOSE: The object of the Foundation is to accumulate a Fund, the income from which is to be used to finance scholarships. The principal cannot be used, hence the usefulness of the Fund is perpetual. Whatever is in the Funds keeps working year after year, indefinitely into the future. The larger it becomes, the more it can do - not only once, but time after time as years go by.
At the present time, the AFMS Scholarship Foundation awards twelve $2,000 scholarships each year, allocating two for each regional Federation. The recipients are eligible for two years, so the AFMS is actually funding twenty-four scholarships on a yearly basis.
The Southeast Federation has their own scholarship organization that they contribute to, so therefore there are six (6) regional federations that contribute to the AFMS Fund.
Each year, members of the regional Federations solicit nominations for the AFMS Scholarship Foundation Honorary Award Winner. The Honorary Award Winners are in turn charged with selecting the scholarship recipients...two from each federation.
The Scholarship Foundation will accept donations from anybody; individual members or clubs - anyone interested can donate. As mentioned above, only the interest is used for the scholarships.
The problem of the scholarship fund embezzlement has been put to rest. The latest information on the case was reported in the October AFMS Newsletter. The fund is alive and functioning as it is supposed to. We ask for and need the support of every individual club. In the future we hope to increase our scholarship amounts. This will happen as soon as we have sufficient funds to do so.
I want to encourage clubs to make this information available to your members...don't just stick it in a pile somewhere. The fact that there are so many questions about the AFMS Scholarship is due to lack of communication on the part of each club.
While browsing through the 50th Anniversary Booklet of the Midwest Federation, I found this interesting little 'tidbit'... Clubs were collecting '2 cents worth' (2 cents per member) for the new AFMS Scholarship Fund, which was made official on March 18, 1964. We'll accept your 2 cents worth, but $2.00 would be better!
Until next time,
from Dee Holland, Scholarship Foundation President
Six of our Seven AFMS member federations participate in the Scholarship Foundations. (The Southeast has its own scholarship program.)
We are pleased to announce the names of the six individuals selected by their federations to serve as honorary award winners. Each will select two graduate earth science students who will receive AFMS Scholarship funds of $2,000 each for the next two years.
The honorary award recipients are:
Rocky Mountain Federation
South Central Federation
We begin this new fiscal year with a new slate of officers for AFMS and a new President and Vice President for the Scholarship Foundation. We continue to support the AFMS Scholarship Foundation program with awards to recipients in each of the regions with the exception of the Southeast Federation.
The Scholarship Foundation desperately needs your help. If we are to continue with this program and not have to reduce scholarship benefits for students we'll need an influx of money. With interest rates down at the moment, we are barely holding our own. As I mentioned in last months message, we received a welcome donation from the Intermountain Faceters Guild to pay for the bond that will protect us. And we have heard from our President, Marve Starbuck about the method of raising money at the recent Midwest Convention.
If you have suggestions or donations please contact your regional AFMS Scholarship chairperson.
If we can work out the details with the host federation and club, we would like to have a live auction next year at Syracuse To do this, we need special items of value to use in this manner. If you would be willing to donate an item, please contact your regional AFMS Scholarship chairperson. More on this in the coming months.
from Bill Smith
It seems only yesterday we were at the AFMS show in Ventura, CA yet I see we have nearly 10,000 miles on our rig since the show. That doesn't count our month long trip to Alaska. My how time flys. One of the highlights of our travels was the NFMS show in Pasco WA.
I am looking forward to the upcoming year, meeting new and old friends, corresponding with committee members and attending many of the shows, especially in the midwest and east.
We are currently visiting Janet's folks here in Kansas and will slowly make our way home via friends and relatives in Texas, Arizona, California and Oregon. Should be home some time late January.
Now is the time to plan and work on your new case for the upcoming shows in your area. We are trying to get two new cases ready, one of Alaska material and the other material from here in Kansas.
Until next month.
from Marge Collins
The purpose of this Competition is to Recognize and Reward authors of presentations about the Earth Sciences and to make winning programs available to affiliated Clubs across the country. Slide, video or CR-ROM presentations relating to the Earth Sciences are eligible. Submit entries in one of the four amateur classes or "EXCELLENCE IN EDUCATION" for "commercial" presentations. (Inquire about CD-ROM entries)
WHO MAY ENTER
DEADLINE for entry: April 15, 2004
CLASSES FOR ENTRIES
JUDGING (Judges look for:)
For VHS VIDEOS or CD-ROM
For SLIDE PRESENTATIONS
REPRODUCTION / DUPLICATION
HOW TO ENTER
DIRECT QUESTIONS AND ENTRIES TO:
AFMS Program Competition Coordinator
from Pat LaRue, AFMS 2003 Uniform Rules Chair
In 2002 the AFMS gave its approval to a three-year pilot program designed to bring judges from all seven federations together in one place to examine the rules governing competitive exhibits in depth. It was agreed that the AFMS Endowment Fund would pay the tuition for one judge from each federation as well as one person from the Uniform Rules Committee. The goal was for each person in attendance to take back not only a better understanding of the rules, but also a desire to develop some type of training program for judges within his/her own federation. This was year one of the program.
All seven federations were represented at the workshop and it was my privilege to represent the Uniform Rules Committee. Although the majority of the participants were experienced judges, a few of the participants wanted to learn more about the process in an effort to improve their own skills as judges and/or competitive exhibitors. About 20 participants were in attendance and at least one federation (CFMS) had its entire 2004 Rules Committee there; those three guys are already making plans!
Our instructor was Jay Bowman who will serve as the Chairman of the AFMS Uniform Rules Committee next year. (He was assisted by Dee Holland, chair for the AFMS Ad Hoc Committee.) Jay has taught this workshop as part of the Eastern Federation judging certification for many years. Using the Rules book as the text, he led the group through the sections which apply to everyone section by section. While I can't speak for the rest of the group. I noted things that I either had forgotten or had never bothered to read. We tend to focus on the rules peculiar to the divisions we judge and overlook the rest . . . not always good for the exhibitor and definitely not conducive to applying the same standards on an equal basis from federation to federation. Jay made us think!
The official AFMS participants, representing each of the regional federations were:
Dale Miller, South Central
We looked at all the divisions and the rules applying to each. Brave workshop participants from this and other classes brought in displays for critique. At least two of them plan to exhibit in competition at their regional shows and sought our opinions in an effort to improve their displays. Each took home some fresh ideas on how to improve.
The setting for this experience was Wildacres, a retreat located in the mountains of western North Carolina. This beautiful setting features motel like accommodations with private baths in each room as well as lounge and patio areas. Meals are served in a separate dining facility. On clear days you can stand on one of the patios and see Mt. Mitchell, the highest point in North Carolina, in the distance. On "free day" you have the opportunity to do some sightseeing along the Blue Ridge Parkway, take a field trip or visit some of the quaint shops in the area. Now that's my idea of a working vacation!
Each of the seven federations has the privilege of sending one of its judges, experienced or just getting started, to Wildacres to attend the judging seminar in each of the next two years. I encourage you to take advantage of what could be a "once in a lifetime" opportunity. AFMS will pay tuition fees for the person you designate. The attendee pays his/her transportation costs. Watch for further information when it is available.
from Dee Holland
At the end of each session of the EFMLS Wildacres Workshop each class selects a spokesperson to share with the group what they learned during the week. Participants also get to show off the various projects they have completed in these classes - faceted stones, carvings, silverwork, cabochons, wire-wrapping, and micromounting and microphotography for example. Barbara Jacobsen was "volunteered" to be the spokesperson from the Judging class. Her presentation brought the house down, but you'll have to ask Barbara about that.
A surprise during the presentations were the certification of a number of people who had taken the judging class. Although the Eastern Federation Certification Program is a two-year program, Jay awarded "Certified Judges" certificates to Pat LaRue, Joyce Hanschu, Betty James,and Norvie Enns, because of the many years of judging each already had done in his/her own federation. Also receiving certificates were Bural LaRue of CFMS, and Wayne Sukow of Eastern. Jim Hurlbut and Dee Holland received certificates at earlier sessions of Wildacres.
By Jim Brace-Thompson, Junior Activities Chair
A big part of enjoying a hobby is sharing it with others. They say you don't truly "know" something until you're able to teach it to another. Learning to communicate effectively is an important skill that will benefit kids in aspects of life far beyond the hobby. Children who go on to become mineralogists, geologists, or paleontologists will discover that science isn't complete until their findings are written up and shared with colleagues, either in a public address at an academic convention or in a journal article or a book. Those who go on to become lapidary artists will find great enjoyment in sharing their skills and techniques with others as informal mentors or in classroom or workshop settings. And even those who (heaven forbid!) drop out of our hobby will find lifelong benefit to being taught the basics of effective communication.
In this, my second-to-last proposal for a series of "merit badge" sorts of activities for junior members, I provide suggestions for helping kids share what they learn about rocks, minerals, and fossils with others with three activities that could earn kids an award for Communication.
Give an oral presentation to your club or to your class at school about a trip you took, a project you did, a special rock or fossil you've collected, etc. In preparing your presentation, consider the essential questions that all reporters ask: Who? What? Where? When? How? Why? For instance, if you're telling about a field trip adventure, who went on the trip? What were you hoping to find? Where did you go? When did you go there? How did you find out about the collecting spot and/or how did you go about collecting there? And why might you recommend this site to others? Or, you might organize your talk like a story, with a beginning, a middle, and an end. For instance, in describing a field trip, tell how you got the idea to visit a specific locality, describe the trip itself, and end by showing what you found there. In telling how to do a particular lapidary project, describe the tools you'll need, the steps involved, and end by unveiling the finished product.
Write a 250- to 500-word article for your club newsletter. Follow the same journalistic questions of who, what, where, when, how, and why described above. Try writing different "genres" or types of articles. For instance, one might be an anecdote, or story, of a funny event that happened on a collecting fieldtrip that, at the same time, packs in useful information about where you went and what could be found there. Another might be a more technical article that describes in detail the steps for completing a project. Write several articles, trying out different styles (funny, serious, technical, informal) until you find a style that fits you best.
Prepare a bulletin board display for your annual club show, a local library, or your school on rocks, fossils, minerals, or the lapidary arts. In such a display, you'll want to incorporate interesting pictures and graphics to convey most of your information, with a minimum of supporting text in the form of headlines and brief captions.
Watch next month for my final suggestion of a merit badge idea. Meanwhile, as always, I welcome comments on the various ideas and activities I've been describing this past year (email me at firstname.lastname@example.org) as well as ideas of your own. Please share with me, so that I can share with others, the activities you've found successful in engaging and educating young rockhounds while-as always-having fun!
from Evan Day
On September 9th I wrote my my Utah Congressman Rob Bishop concerning HR2416 and S546. I emailed the cover letter to him (plus Sen. Hatch, Sen. Bennett, Mr Matheson, and Mr. Cannon), then hand delivered a complete hardcopy to his Brigham City office.
The evening of Wednesday, 17 Sept., he personally telephoned me to say he got the information, had checked with the some of the other people in his district that I mentioned as being impacted, and SAID HE AGREED WITH ME! Turns out he is on the House committee and the sub-committee responsible for the bills. He is hopeful that they can be killed for this term, but Rob recognizes he is a freshman with limited clout, but will try his best. He seemed appreciative of getting a letter with specifics, from one who had read and analyzed the bills, and was personally involved in the issue - not copycat rhetoric.
I take this as a very positive sign.
[Ed. Note: Have YOU written to your Congressman yet asking that they help defeat HR2416? See the September and October issues of the AFMS Newsletter for details on how this proposed legislation will limit our collecting rights. Our letters helped defeat the "Baucus Bill" several years ago. We can do it again! don't delay - write your representative in Congress today.]
from B. Jay Bowman, Chair AFMS Uniform Rules
The new rules that went into effect this year in Jewelry do not mean that you no longer have to label your pieces, It means that you don't have to list every technique on every piece in order to get credit for the technique. You should still label the primary technique used for the piece but not lose points in showmanship by having a label larger than the piece you are exhibiting. It also means that you no longer have to have fifteen different techniques in order to get all fifteen points for techniques.
If you have engraving, enameling, mokume, or some of the other more difficult techniques in your pieces then you will get extra credit for those techniques. The extra credit will be based on the judge's experience in doing those techniques and how much more difficult they are in comparison to the more often used methods of making a jewelry item, as well as how well you did them.
This may be a very subjective call, but there are many areas in judging cases that are subjective. It would take a large volume of criteria to eliminate any subjectivity in judging. Throughout the coming year there will be periodic comments about the rules and if anyone has questions that might be of interest to many people I will try to answer them in these articles.
B. Jay Bowman
from Bonnie Glismann
Only two submissions this month and both from the Eastern Federation. We're winding down the year for your submissions for this recognition. If you or your club has not yet sent in the name of an individual or couple that you would like to recognize as your "Rockhound of the Year", please get it in to your regional chairman now. Every AFMS affiliated club is encouraged to take advantage of this easy and very public method of recognizing valuable members. I look forward to hearing from your club.
We will begin accepting recognitions for 2004 in January and encourage every club to consider taking advantage of this opportunity.
Louis Budell of The Gem and Mineral Society of Syracuse (New York) is our 2003 nominee for AFMS Club Rockhound of the Year. Lou, currently our club Treasurer and EFMLS Treasurer, is a loyal, exceptionally hard-working member with many talents. First and foremost, he's a mineralogist who really loves quartz but has a deep appreciation of all fine crystals. Beyond that, Lou is a trained dowser and seldom ventures far without his rods. He attends many conferences and is continually honing his skills hoping one day he can get good enough to find super minerals/precious metals. Lou is also very talented as a precision lapidary carver using a Foredom rotary tool to create pendants that are beyond belief. In our local club, Lou has held almost all the offices from President on down. For years he has also been Wholesale Chair for our annual show as well as Exhibits Chair. He will also be our contact person/Registrar for the 2004 EFMLS/AFMS convention in Syracuse. We are indeed grateful for this man - one of our "Angels" - who is an invaluable contributor to our club's success.
Nominated by Gene Ridall and Bob Livingston
I would like to nominate Ellery Borow as the 2003 AFMS Club Rockhound of the Year. A member of the Water-Oak Gem & Mineral Society (Maine) and six other clubs, Ellery has served as president of our club for five years and show chairman for nine years. He has presented many programs and written many articles and reviews of symposiums for our bulletin. He is an enthusiastic and knowledgeable person who is always willing to help the club in any way he can as well as share his knowledge.of rocks and minerals with anyone who asks. At show time, he is planner, electrician, exhibitor, night watchman and general all-around helper. Sharing his knowledge at the black light booth, he has amazed and interested many people in this subject. During the last four years, he has accompanied me on all the trips to the shows in our Region One area, and since last October has been the chauffeur so that I was able to go when I could not drive. His dry sense of humor keeps us going in times of stress. Our club is very lucky to have a valuable asset like Ellery.
nominated by William S. Longley
from Izzy Burns, AFMS Past President
We have signed a contract with the Tucson Gem & Mineral Society to host a free booth at their annual show this February. TGMS is a member of the Rocky Mountain Federation. This is a wonderful opportunity for us to promote the AFMS to people from all over the United States and from all over the world. Dates for the Tucson Gem & Mineral Society show, their 50th anniversary show, are February 13 - 16, 2004. The show will be held at the Tucson Convention Center.
Last year at this booth we distributed information and flyers about the AFMS , the CFMS./AFMS Show, the Northwest Federation show, Commemmorative Stamps, Lewis & Clark Rocks on the Trail, etc. On children's day at the show we gave away five (5) buckets of rocks to children ages 8 - 80.
If any AFMS Officer, Committee Chair or Regional Federation Show Chair desires to have their flyers distributed, please mail them to use before January 15, 2004. This is a complimentary booth, so nothing can be sold from it.
If you plan to attend the show, we would greatly appreciate your help in manning the booth for a few hours. The booth will be open from Thursday, February 13, Friday, Feb. 14 and Saturday, Feb. 15 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on Sunday, February 16 from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m.
If you have any questions or suggestions for the promotion of the AFMS at this booth, please let us know.
We look forward to seeing you at the Tucson show and at the AFMS booth this February.
Izzie & Bill Burns
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