Thoughts from the President

July 12, 2024 - Weekly Message from Jim Carrington

Dear Danforth Center Community,

Feedback is necessary, useful, and often illuminating. Feedback leads to self-reflection, which is a step on the way to improvement. I hope everyone takes advantage of the upcoming Engagement Survey Listening Sessions (starting July 15) to offer feedback about your experience at the Danforth Center. I’ve received or heard about a lot of feedback from individuals who recently visited the Center, mostly as candidates interviewing for new Assistant Member faculty positions. As their feedback is largely a reflection on the Danforth Center community, I think you’ll be interested in what they said.

“This is the 8th Wonder of the World.” This direct quote was from a scientific collaborator at another institution. Our site, our facilities, and the way our facilities are maintained are noticed and admired by visitors. Our facilities are exceptional and often envied.

“Wow, you seem really collaborative.” The five recent Assistant Member candidates all commented on this. They were particularly impressed by how nearly all projects are collaborations, and how scientific teams have evolved over time based on those collaborations. The candidates were encouraged to envision how their programs would impact other Danforth Center teams through collaboration.

“The scientific culture seems really different here.” The recent candidates noticed a culture of sharing resources and sharing credit. They commented on how our mission, vision and values really shape what we do and how we talk about our work. They were impressed by a culture of getting things done, and how administrative and non-research community members contributed to and shared ownership in scientific success. They were surprised how efficiently the search was done and by everyone’s helpful attitude.

“The trainees and CSTM members were really engaged.” Each candidate commented about how impressed they were with CSTM members’ participation in the search. They noticed a sophisticated understanding about both the needs as well as the opportunities for mentoring, and at least some of the candidates found this to be eye-opening.

“I’m on board!” This was from one of the candidates, Nadia Shakoor, who accepted our offer of Assistant Member just this morning! We’re excited for Nadia and her team, and for the new opportunities for growth at the Danforth Center. I hope you join me in congratulating Nadia on her new position and for all that she’s done.

Jim Carrington,
President and Chief Executive Officer

Note: The Weekly Message will be on hiatus for a few weeks until I return from vacation. I’ll be out to pasture, think it’s safe to say, enjoying the Rocky Mountain way just south of Mt. Sneffels.

Previous Weekly Messages from Jim Carrington

Danforth Center Response Plan

The Danforth Plant Science Center recognizes the potential of exposure to Coronavirus (COVID-19) in our building and the impact it could have on our people and the Center. Accordingly, we have a plan in place in the event of a positive test for COVID-19 of an individual who was present in our Building(s).

Danforth Center Updates

During this unique moment in history, the first priority of the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center is the health and safety of our Center community, our families, and those who work with us.