From Plant Press Vol. 17 no. 1, January 2014
By Warren L. Wagner
Over the past couple of decades the Department of Botany has maintained a relatively stable staff, all working together for many years. On occasion, we have been able to add additional staff while even more have retired. A significant change began in 2011 when the Smithsonian Institution offered a buyout opportunity to staff who were thinking about retirement. Six staff in Botany retired in 2011 (see Plant Press 14(4): 3; 2011). Since research departments were able to replace these positions at a lower pay scale, the Department of Botany has embarked on staff succession planning. This plan called for eight positions in the department and included recruits for Research Scientists (Plant Press 16(3): 3; 2013), collections management (Plant Press 16(1): 4; 2013), and information technology (Plant Press 15(4): 4; 2012). Federal budget issues have slowed the completion of these hires and three more are currently on hold in collections management, IT support, and research/collections support, but should move forward to be filled in 2014.