NCSE's Scott receives Dawkins award

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NCSE's executive director Eugenie C. Scott received the Atheist Alliance of America's Richard Dawkins Award at the group's annual meeting in Denver, Colorado, on September 1, 2012. Unable to attend the ceremony in person, the namesake of the award began his video introduction by saying, "Eugenie Scott is one of my very favorite people, although we have our civilized disagreements, as I shall tell," and adding, "it's impossible to meet Genie without loving her, whether you agree with her or not." Scott began her acceptance speech by joking, "I now possess awards in the names of both Stephen Jay Gould and Richard Dawkins. This demonstrates that I can get along with everyone. Regardless of my historic amiability, however, I do not anticipate ever being presented with the Ken Ham award, if such exists."

Scott concluded by saying, "it is with much feeling that I accept this award with Richard's name on it. It is meaningful to me and in some ways brings full circle a respect I have had for his influence on science and its significance to us as human beings. Not only in influencing my own understanding and teaching of evolutionary biology, but in my more recent career as director of NCSE, in trying to spread more broadly the understanding of evolution as a science, and to encourage people to think about it, regardless of the philosophical or religious system they embrace. ... I can't hold a candle to Richard when it comes to increasing scientific knowledge — but I am honored to be considered, with him, to be a strong advocate of increasing the public understanding of that knowledge, and I join him in that important task."