From the President


Mark Ivan Jacobson

Welcome FM members and visitors,

Welcome. This message will be my last as President of National Friends of Mineralogy, since I am at the end of my two-year term of office. At the 2019 February meeting in Tucson, the board with all the new at-large members will nominate and elect new officers – President, Vice-president, Secretary and Treasurer. The office of the president is term-limited and I can not serve again.

So what have we accomplished during the last two years. The FM national website was admirably converted by Bill Besse to WordPress, redesigned and moved to a new webpage provider. I have been slowly adding scanned historic FM newsletters to the website and expanded the past and future symposium listings. The goal is to get all past newsletters from our very first newsletter in 1970 and later, as downloadable pdf documents on the website and all past FM symposia program-proceedings-abstracts scanned and available online also. For National symposia the fitting location is the national website, whereas for chapters, the chapter webpages are appropriate.

The symposia funding rules were modified so chapters can request money for their symposia if they wish. My preference is if a chapter wants funds and is willing to issue and make public a proceeding-abstract volume, I’d recommend awarding funds. We have a written document from a former IRS attorney, now a private enterprise tax attorney, that contributions to non-FM, non-501(c)3 mineral symposia are perfectly legal if the symposium is aligned with our organizational goals, so our membership can advance the activities in their local area.

Other activities to celebrate are that mineral shows around the country continue, often with excellent speaker programs. FM participates sometimes with speakers who are FM members. The mineral magazines in the USA have contin-ued to survive and publish significant articles. FM supports four of these magazines with awards- The Mineralogical Record, Rocks & Minerals, Mineral News and Min-eral Monographs. FM National awards Educational Mineral Display recognition at the Denver Gem and Mineral Show and the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show. Some board members asked, why not provide awards at other shows. That is a good idea, so if a chapter can provide the manpower to define, create, administer, document and present such awards, please made a motion to the na-tional board, get it seconded and we can vote on it. The National FM board just has to receive such paperwork with the people to execute it to consider expanding this activity.

Field trips are being carried out by the chapters. Each chapter faces different challenges with obtain-ing permissions and they are addressing their needs. People to people contacts with building relationships for mineral collecting access sometimes achieves amazing results.

I have met and worked with an increasingly greater number of people during the past two years. I would have liked to have participated in more chapter activities but I did all I could. Others have done similarly. The symposia that the chapters create are great attractions. The non-FM symposia have also increased making it a challenge to attend all of them. New specimens continue to be brought out for collectors with new miner-alogical research sometimes being done on them. It has been a good two years. May the next FM President enjoy it as well.

Mark Ivan Jacobson
President, Friends of Mineralogy