Home Virginia Museum of Natural History Board of Trustees elects new chair, vice-chair

Virginia Museum of Natural History Board of Trustees elects new chair, vice-chair

Virginia Museum of Natural HistoryThe Virginia Museum of Natural History Board of Trustees has elected Dr. Thomas R. Benzing, of Waynesboro, as board chair, and Dr. Arthur V. Evans, of Richmond, as vice-chair.

Benzing has served as a trustee since 2015 and has served as vice-chair since 2017. He succeeds Dr. Barry Dorsey, who served as board chair since 2017.

“I believe this museum is a hidden gem in the Commonwealth and, during my tenure as chair, I hope to work with the rest of the board, the museum’s staff, and its charitable foundation to strengthen recognition for its statewide value to scientific understanding and education,” said Benzing.

Benzing is a professor at James Madison University in the School of Integrated Sciences where he teaches and conducts research in water quality and water resources management. He is a research associate at the Virginia Museum of Natural History, and a research scientist for the South River Science Team. Benzing also serves as JMU Professor-In-Residence at Waynesboro High School, as conservation chair for the Virginia Council of Trout Unlimited, and on the board of the Center for Coldwaters Restoration.

“The museum looks forward to the next two years of Dr. Benzing’s leadership,” said Dr. Joe Keiper, executive director of the Virginia Museum of Natural History. “This is an exciting time in the museum’s history, as it looks to continue expanding its impact throughout the entire Commonwealth of Virginia. Dr. Benzing brings a tremendous amount of experience and knowledge of VMNH, which will allow the museum to continue to reach its lofty goals.”

Evans, the new vice-chair, has served on the board since 2015. He is a career entomologist who serves as a research associate for the Virginia Museum of Natural History and as a research collaborator at the Smithsonian Institution.

Evans is an adjunct professor at Randolph-Macon College, University of Richmond, and Virginia Commonwealth University. Evans, who is also an accomplished author and lecturer on insect biology and natural history, is known in the greater Richmond area for his popular radio program, “What’s Bugging You?”, which airs on WCVE Richmond Public Radio.

“I look forward to serving the Virginia Museum of Natural History in my new role as vice-chair of the Board of Trustees and will continue to promote the museum’s research activities, education programs, and exhibits throughout the Commonwealth,” said Evans.

The museum’s Board of Trustees also voted to re-appoint Jennifer Burnett as treasurer and elected Janet Scheid for another term as secretary. The board recognized outgoing trustees Christine Baggerly, Monica Monday, and James W. Severt, II.



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