As we enter the new millennium, we face many new challenges in the world of science and technology: mapping the human genome and unlocking its potential benefits to cure disease; exploring the stars; and conserving our environment. In the year 2000, AAAS responded to these many challenges by offering a number of cutting-edge programs and activities.
The journal Science published some of the most important research developments, as well as some of the best news items. The Drosophila genome, an ancient land of lakes on Mars, a genetically modified monkey, and AIDS in Africa were some of the highlights in 2000. Science also achieved greater visibility around the world, as more people logged onto Science Online.
AAAS programs tackled some of the critical issues that were raised by the advances in science and technology. For example, advances in stem cell research raised many ethical questions and pointed out the need for better public understanding. AAAS responded by hosting a congressional briefing on stem cell research and application. AAAS also released a report on Human Inheritable Genetic Modification.
The year 2000 saw an election year like never before, as presidential candidates Al Gore and George W. Bush dueled for the presidency, well past November 17. AAAS hosted two seminars with representatives of the presidential candidates and political commentators, both of which drew large crowds.
AAAS continued its efforts to improve science and technology around the world, focusing on its ties with the U.S. State Department. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright spoke at the 2000 Annual Meeting, and AAAS President Mary Good later met with Albright to offer AAASs help in strengthening science and technology at the State Department.
If AAAS is to continue to serve future generations of scientists, we must focus on todays young students. AAAS offered a number of programs to meet the need for better science education, including DC ACTS, an initiative to reform science and math education in Washington, D.C., public schools; an Evolution Teach-In at the University of Kansas; and high school biology and algebra textbook evaluations by Project 2061.
A number of AAAS programs took advantage of the World Wide Web to improve public understanding of science and serve the scientific community. We expanded our Right to Travel Web site to assist scientists who want to travel to Cuba. The Kinetic City Cyber Club launched a new Deep Delete story line to engage children and help them learn about science. And Project 2061 produced a Spanish version of its Web site.
In the new millennium, we are more concerned than ever about conserving our environment. AAAS addressed this concern through a number of projects: we hosted a conference on Oceans for the New Millennium and International Ocean Science Day, we launched an initiative called the Ecosystem Dynamics and Essential Human Needs program, and we published the World Atlas of Population and Environment.
You can read more about these programs and AAASs many other activities in the following pages. I am proud to say that this year, when I announced my retirement from AAAS after 12 years of service, AAAS recorded its twelfth consecutive operating surplus and the largest single surplus in its history. I leave AAAS knowing that it is well positioned to serve in the future as a strong leader in the scientific community.