Eugenie Scott Retiring from the NCSE

The American Association for the Advancement of Science reports: Eugenie Scott to Retire From U.S. Center That Fights Antievolution Forces. They say:

Eugenie Scott has spent 26 years helping teachers do what’s right for their students in the name of science. And while the need to defend the teaching of evolution and climate change certainly hasn’t disappeared, Scott announced today that she is stepping down later this year as the founding CEO and “the public face” of the National Center for Science Education (NCSE).

The Controversy between evolution and creationism will never be the same again. The AAAS article also says, with our bold font:

Her leadership skills will be sorely missed, says Kenneth Miller, a biology professor at Brown University. “She’s incomparable, irreplaceable, and indispensable,” says Miller, who was a key figure in one of the center’s most decisive victories, a 2005 court case that blunted an attack on evolution by the Dover, Pennsylvania, school district. Scott was masterful at building the coalition needed to win the case, he adds.


Miller, a former member of NCSE’s board, says that Scott’s greatest strength has been her ability “to bring people together around the goal of defending the integrity of science education.” NCSE is now hunting for her successor, and Miller says that person will need both her “passion for the cause” and her ability “to herd cats.”

That says it all. The NCSE also has an article about it: NCSE’s Scott to retire, which reminds us that:

During Scott’s time at NCSE, she was honored with no fewer than eight honorary degrees as well as the Public Welfare Medal from the National Academy of Science, the inaugural Stephen Jay Gould Prize from the Society for the Study of Evolution, the Public Service Award from the National Science Board, and the Scientific Freedom and Responsibility Award from the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

If you think you’ve got what it takes to replace Genie, here’s NCSE’s announcement about the job opening: Help wanted: executive director. In our humble opinion, no one can literally replace her, but someone will have to give it a try.

No, your Curmudgeon isn’t even thinking of it. Aside from being utterly unqualified, we also lack the necessary diplomatic skills. We’re the last thing they need. But we’re looking forward to the news about who the new executive director will be.

Copyright © 2013. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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12 responses to “Eugenie Scott Retiring from the NCSE

  1. Whatever award our Curmudgeon may have in his gift which is the absolute polar opposite of his uncoveted Buffoon Award should be bestowed upon the magnificent and admirable Ms Scott.

    Perhaps the Curmudgeon Legion of Enlightenment Honour, with Peppered Moth Cluster

  2. I agree with Mega. Curm, you’ll just have to come up with something appropriate for Ms Scott.

    As far as a replacement is concerned, I’m afraid Curmy’s bite is worse than his bark, so he’s not a good candidate.

  3. Megalonyx says: “Whatever award our Curmudgeon may have in his gift which is the absolute polar opposite of his uncoveted Buffoon Award should be bestowed upon the magnificent and admirable Ms Scott.”

    Words fail me. I can’t think of a sufficiently lofty award. She has all the intelligence, knowledge, and grace that the creationists lack, and none of their disagreeable attributes.

  4. Having worked closely with Genie as an NCSE board member and activist, I can tell you that she will be a mighty tough act to follow. She made NCSE what it is. And she is an awfully, awfully nice person.

  5. Barbara Forrest says: “And she is an awfully, awfully nice person.”

    That’s the problem with finding a replacement. Most people who are qualified for the job, and who are keenly interested in “the Controversy,” tend to be, shall we say, a bit impatient with their detractors. It’s the old accommodationalist vs. confrontationalist issue.

  6. J. Meyers

    Second Megalonyx.
    J. Meyers

  7. I would recommend that the way to honor her is by compiling a list of the insults directed at her by ID proponents.

    Here’s one from David Berlinski.

    David Berlinski: Eugenie Scott is a small squirrel-like creature who is often sent out to defend Darwin. Whenever doubts are raised, she withdraws a naturalistic nut from her cache and flaunts it proudly. And if naturalism won’t do, there is always methodological naturalism.” [David Berlinski interviewing himself, quoted at:

    David Berlinski: “In the case of Daniel Dennett, I think contempt might be a better word than hostility, and indifference a better word still. There are, of course, lots more where he came from – P.Z. Myers, for example, or Eugenie Scott, or Jason Rosenhouse. Throw in Steven Weinberg [Nobel-winning physicist, atheist], just to reach an even number.” [David Berlinski interviewing himself, quoted at:

    Ann Coulter: All the great scientists saw their work as finding God in the universe, as finding the design. And to have these hacks like Eugenie Scott come in and say, “Oh, that’s not real science. Unless you keep God out, it’s not real science.” It’s preposterous.” [Ann Coulter in Darwin’s Deadly Legacy]

    David Klinghitler: “Both intelligent design and creationism take issue with the Darwinian paradigm that portrays evolution as unguided and reflecting no intelligent purpose or intention. Beyond that, the two ideas have very little in common. That doesn’t stop Eugenie Scott from forcing them, over and over again, into the same basket.
    …The only conceivable purposes served by this insistence are dishonorable… intimidating scientists and non-scientists alike, and fooling the public… That’s more than a provocation. It’s a lie… a conscious dishonesty — or, more charitably, a willed ignorance on the part of Dr. Scott and the NCSE…

    Eugenie Scott, leading Darwin lobbyist, sounds like a nice lady. It’s too bad she persists in seeking to make her case by confusing people. What is she doing in a disreputable and dishonest business like that? [David Klinhoffer, ENV]

    William Dembski: “But in fact, [Eugenie] Scott has purposely failed to disclose certain key items of information which demonstrate that intelligent design research is in fact now part of the mainstream peer-reviewed scientific literature.” — [Intelligent Design and Peer Review. A Response to Eugenie Scott and the NCSE. By William A. Dembski. November 1, 2003.]

  8. Diogenes said: “I would recommend that the way to honor her is by compiling a list of the insults directed at her by ID proponents.”

    You overlooked Discovery Institute: Eugenie Scott is a Menace!

  9. The civility is just dripping from the DI, isn’t it? I’m knee-deep in it! Wait a minute, that’s not civility…

  10. docbill1351

    Hey, I could be a replacement. Might need to sand down a few splintery edges but otherwise I fit Barbara’s description to a tee! Well, most of it.

    OK, this much of it:

    “…what it is. And…”

    It’s a start.

  11. “NCSE is now hunting for her successor, and Miller says that person will need both her ‘passion for the cause’ and her ability ‘to herd cats.'”

    You should reconsider, Curmy. You certainly meet the first criterion, and Phobos and Deimos can help you with the second.

  12. Three cheers for Eugenie Scott!