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The recipient of the 2008 Templeton Prize for Progress Toward Research or Discoveries about Spiritual Realities was Michael Heller, a Polish cosmologist and Catholic priest, currently Professor in the Faculty of Philosophy at the Pontifical Academy of Theology in Krakow. John M.
NCSE's executive director Eugenie C. Scott is to receive the honorary degree of Doctor of Science from the University of New Mexico on May 17, 2008. In a letter to Scott, the university's president David J. Schmidly wrote, "This degree is a reflection of the high regard in which you are held and acknowledgement of the vast accomplishments you have made in your career."
Malcolm McKenna, a retired curator of vertebrate paleontology at the American Museum of Natural History and a Supporter of NCSE, died on March 3, 2008, in Boulder, Colorado, according to the obituary in The New York Times (March 10, 2008). Born on July 21, 1930, in Pomona, California, he attended the California Institute of Technology and Pomona College, before graduating in paleontology at the University of California, Berkeley, where he also earned his Ph.D.
The second issue of Evolution: Education and Outreach -- the new journal aspiring to promote accurate understanding and comprehensive teaching of evolutionary theory for a wide audience -- is now available on-line.
William F. Buckley Jr., widely considered to be the father of the modern conservative movement, died on February 27, 2008, at the age of 82 in Stamford, Connecticut, according to The New York Times's obituary (February 27, 2008). Born in New York City in 1925, Buckley served in the Army from 1944 to 1946 before entering Yale University, from which he graduated in 1950.
The International Society for Science and Religion recently adopted a statement on the concept of "intelligent design," describing it as "neither sound science nor good theology." The statement continues, "Although the boundaries of science are open to change, allowing supernatural explanations to count as science undercuts the very purpose of science, which is to explain the workings of nature without recourse to religious language.
The American Geophysical Union reaffirmed its support for teaching evolution in December 2007, when it adopted a revised version of its Biological Evolution and the History of the Earth Are Foundations of Science statement. The statement begins, "AGU affirms the central importance of including scientific theories of Earth history and biological evolution in science education.
At its annual meeting in September 2007, the American Fisheries Society adopted a resolution (PDF) concerning the teaching of alternatives to evolution affirming "that the theory of evolution is the only current scientific explanation for the diversity of life on earth for inclusion in the science curricula of public schools," expressing its opposition to "policies that would allow the teaching of creationism, intelligent design or other political or faithbased doctrines in public