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July-August 2016

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Museum Notes

COLORADO UPDATE

Coming up on 14 September is the annual reception/open house at the Geology Museum at the Colorado School of Mines in Golden. Details are given in the Letters column (p. 305) in this issue. Also in September is the meeting of the Society of Mineral Museum Professionals (SMMP), which, as always, will be held in conjunction with the Denver Show (16–18 September).

In addition to the Colorado School of Mines Museum, other museums to visit while in Denver for the show are the Denver Museum of Nature and Science and, in Leadville, the National Mining Hall of Fame and Museum.

DIRECTOR HONORED

Jose Santamaria, executive director of the Tellus Science Museum, in Cartersville, Georgia, received the prestigious Museum Professional of the Year Award from the Georgia Association of Museums and Galleries during its annual conference in January 2016. He has been at the Tellus Science Museum since before its opening in 2009, when it was known as the Weinman Mineral Museum. Some of Santamaria's most recent accomplishments include coauthoring The 50 Coolest Things at Tellus and editing the second edition of Minerals of Georgia. In addition to coordinating initial fundraising efforts for Tellus, Santamaria also assisted with fundraising for special exhibit galleries and museum upgrades, even as he served the museum community as a leader at the local, state, and national levels.

Jose Santamaria, Museum Professional of the Year.

Jose Santamaria, Museum Professional of the Year.

BLUE-RIBBON CASES

Congratulations are due the Fersman Mineralogical Museum RAS, in Moscow, Russia, for winning the National Friends of Mineralogy Award for Best Educational Exhibit by an Institution at this year's February Tucson Show. Maria S. Alferova, senior curator at the museum, prepared the exhibit, which was titled Fifteen Shades of Blue, following the show theme of Shades of Blue: Minerals of the World.

The Gemological Institute of America's Museum exhibit, Mother Nature Sings the Blues, was awarded the Betty and Clayton Gibson Memorial Trophy for Best Museum Exhibit at the show by the show committee. The museum is located in Carlsbad, California.

The exhibit put in the 2016 Tucson Show by the Gemological Institute of America's Museum, recipient of the show's Betty and Clayton Gibson Memorial Trophy for Best Museum Exhibit.

The exhibit put in the 2016 Tucson Show by the Gemological Institute of America's Museum, recipient of the show's Betty and Clayton Gibson Memorial Trophy for Best Museum Exhibit.

The exhibit put in the 2016 Tucson Show by the Fersman Mineralogical Museum, RAS, recipient of the Friends of Mineralogy's Best Educational Exhibit by an Institution Award along with Maria S. Alferova, who designed the display.

The exhibit put in the 2016 Tucson Show by the Fersman Mineralogical Museum, RAS, recipient of the Friends of Mineralogy's Best Educational Exhibit by an Institution Award along with Maria S. Alferova, who designed the display.

PEABODY UPDATE

In late February demolition got underway to make room for the David Friend Hall, the mineral gallery and meeting space extraordinaire scheduled to open at the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History, New Haven, Connecticut, in October of this year. Gallery donor Friend hopes his $4 million gift will create a space that will inspire others as he was when he came across a pocket of mica and quartz crystals as a child. A related goal is to raise interest in Earth science to a whole new level. Friend, a 1969 Yale graduate, intends to also establish an endowment to support the displays and programming in the new hall.

The gem and mineral gallery, in its dual role as a meeting space, will serve as a distinctive venue for more than three hundred Peabody programs a year, including lectures, dinners, and special events. It will also draw Yale students into the museum for classes and activities.

An artist's rendering of the David Friend Hall at the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History, due to open in October 2016.

An artist's rendering of the David Friend Hall at the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History, due to open in October 2016.

DINOSAUR EXHIBITION

Opening in mid-March at the American Museum of Natural History, in New York City, was Dinosaurs Among Us, which highlights the unbroken line between the charismatic dinosaurs that dominated the planet for about 170 million years and modern birds, a link that is marked by shared features including feathers, wishbones, enlarged brains, and extremely efficient respiratory systems. The exhibition reflects cutting-edge dinosaur research and features ancient, rarely seen fossils and lifelike models, including a 23-foot-long tyrannosaur with proto-feathers, a small dromeosaur with a 22-inch wingspan and vivid plumage on all four limbs, a fossilized dinosaur nest containing remains of the adult that guarded the hatchlings, and a relative of Triceratops that had plumes.

Young visitors can get up close and personal with a climbable, full-scale model of a nest with twenty Gigantoraptor eggs discovered in China. Visitors can also examine prehistoric eggshells under the microscope. The extensive exhibition continues until 2 January 2017.

Entrance to the Dinosaurs Among Us exhibition at the American Museum of Natural History.

Entrance to the Dinosaurs Among Us exhibition at the American Museum of Natural History.

GEMMOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION APPOINTMENT

The Gemmological Association of Great Britain (Gem-A) has announced the appointment of Alan Hart as the group's new CEO. A former member of the Gem-A Council, Hart was formerly head of Earth Sciences Collections at the Natural History Museum, London. Hart started his career at the Natural History Museum in 1981 as assistant minerals scientific officer, progressing to the position of principal curator of gems and minerals and head of Earth Sciences Collections in 2012. He was chair of the museum's collections committee and served on various science executive boards, providing strategic and operational goals to improve standards and operational efficiencies. Hart took over the new position on 1 June 2016.

Alan Hart, new CEO of Gem-A.

Alan Hart, new CEO of Gem-A.

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