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The Critic's Resource on AntiEvolution

NCSE Evolution and Climate Education Update for 2012/11/09

(by NCSE Deputy Director Glenn Branch)

Dear Friends of NCSE,

Sad news of the death of Molleen Matsumura. And congratulations to J.
William Schopf.


Molleen Matsumura, a former employee of NCSE, died on October 30,
2012, at the age of 64. Born in Riverside, California, on May 1, 1948,
Matsumura earned a BA in anthropology from the University of
California, Berkeley, in 1970. She worked as a freelance writer and
editor and, starting in 1981, as a senior editor for the Alin
Foundation. With Judith Rogers, she wrote Mother To Be: A Guide to
Pregnancy and Birth for Women with Disabilities (Demos Medical
Publishing, 1991). She worked for NCSE as Network Project Director
from 1993 to 2001, having worked as a freelance editor for NCSE as
early as 1991. Before, during, and after her time at NCSE, she was
also active in the humanist community, serving as associate editor of
Free Inquiry, founding and serving as the president of Secular
Humanists of the East Bay, serving on the advisory board of the
Secular Student Alliance, receiving the Distinguished Service Award
from the Council for Secular Humanism in 1993, writing a humanist
advice column entitled "Sweet Reason," and coauthoring Raising
Freethinkers: A Practical Guide for Parenting Beyond Belief (AMACOM,
2009). She also served on the national advisory council of Americans
United for Separation of Church and State.

Matsumura's writing and editorial talents were in constant and welcome
use at NCSE. She wrote voluminously for NCSE Reports and its
descendant Reports of the NCSE, with such articles as "What do
Christians really believe about evolution?" (RNCSE 1998;18[2]:8-9) and
"A new tactic for getting 'creation science' into classrooms?" (RNCSE
1999;19[3]:24-26) still being cited. She also wrote several brochures
and pamphlets, including "Facing challenges to evolution education,"
"Evolution, creationism, and science education: Answers to ten common
questions," and "Eight major court decisions against teaching
creationism as science," and edited the second edition of NCSE's
Voices for Evolution (1995), which, like the third edition, collected
statements supporting the teaching of evolution from scientific,
educational, civil liberties, and religious organizations. Just as
important, though, were Matsumura's tireless and effective
communication and organizing skills. Whether convincing local
activists to work together to oppose creationist incursions in their
communities, rallying scientific or educational organizations to take
a stand, or informing the press of the latest creationist tactics, she
was always a persuasive and enlightening force.

For the two cited articles from RNCSE, visit: 

For Voices for Evolution (now in its third edition), visit: 


NCSE is delighted to congratulate J. William Schopf on receiving the
Paleontological Society Medal, the most prestigious honor bestowed by
the Paleontological Society, on November 4, 2012, at the Geological
Society of America's annual meeting. A life member of NCSE, Schopf is
Professor of Paleobiology in the Department of Earth and Space
Sciences at the University of California, Los Angeles, and the author
of Cradle of Life: The Discovery of Earth's Earliest Fossils
(Princeton University Press, 1999). Previous recipients of the medal
include NCSE Supporters Niles Eldredge, Stephen Jay Gould, and Malcolm
C. McKenna.

For a brief mention of the medal in the program for the meeting (PDF,
p. 23), visit: 

Thanks for reading. And don't forget to visit NCSE's website -- -- where you can always find the latest news on 
evolution and climate education and threats to them.


Glenn Branch
Deputy Director
National Center for Science Education, Inc.
420 40th Street, Suite 2
Oakland, CA 94609-2509
510-601-7203 x305
fax: 510-601-7204

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