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Volume 17, #2                       August 27, 2014

SMMP Meetings
Denver Agenda
President's Message
Meeting Minutes
Museum News
Best Practices Project
Grant Program
SMMP Europe
Best Place to Donate
SMMP Affiliations
SMMP List Server
Paying Dues

Board of Directors

Penny Williamson

School of Earth and Environmental Sciences
University of Wollongong
NSW 2522, Australia

Past President
Virgil W. Lueth

New Mexico Bureau of Mines
801 Leroy Place
Socorro, NM 87801, USA

Vice President
Katherine Dunnell
Mineralogy Department
Royal Ontario Museum
100 Queen's Park
Toronto, Ontario M5S 2C6, Canada

Jean F. DeMouthe

California Academy of Science
Golden Gate Park
San Francisco, CA 94118, USA

Anna M. Domitrovic

6118 W. Lazy Heart Street
Tucson, AZ 85713, USA

Anthony R. Kampf

Natural History Museum
of Los Angeles County
900 Exposition Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90007, USA

Board Members:

Julian Gray
Rice Northwest Museum
 of Rocks & Minerals
Hillsboro, OR, USA

Alan Hart
Department of Mineralogy
Natural History Museum
Cromwell Road
London SW7 5BD, England

Terri Ottaway
Gemological Institute of America
5345 Armada Drive
Carlsbad, CA 92008, USA




Board Meeting:

Membership Meeting:

 Friday, September 12, 2014

 Denver Merchandise Mart (K44-K46)

 2:00 - 2:30 PM

 2:30 - 3:30 PM

Denver Exhibit: "Chalcedony: The Mother of All Agate"
Please contact Jean DeMouthe if you are planning to participate in our society exhibit at the Denver Gem & Mineral Show.

* * *


  1. Call to Order
  2. Introductions
  3. Approval of the Tucson Meeting Minutes
  4. Treasurer's Report
  5. Membership Report
  6. Collections/Curators Committee Report
  7. Education Committee - Denver exhibit; Tucson program and case
  8. SMMP Grant Program Report
  9. Best Practices Initiative
  10. Collections Policy Document (MSA and GSA)
  11. New Business

* * *


G'Day from Down Under. At the Tucson meeting in February, your SMMP committee had a re-organisation of the deckchairs: Jean remains our faithful Secretary; Anna continues her meticulous appraisal of our finances; Katherine is our VP who organises the public "lecture" after the Tucson meeting; Virgil stood down and I am now President. International Girl-Power for the first time! Committee members are Virgil, Julian, Terri, Alan & Tony. We want SMMP to be your voice and to be relevant in the digital age. Tony is diligent behind the scenes as webmaster and in charge of the listserver, which connects us all, all over the globe.

My first official function is to acknowledge the sterling stewardship of out-going President, Virgil Lueth. He has been president for as long as I have been a member (2003) and we have thrived under his friendly and tactful guidance. Our profile has been positively raised in the last decade. I couldn't ask for a better mentor. He is still on the committee as past-president, so don't let him get complacent.

Secondly, this is your society. I have noticed that many active members are unfinancial and strongly encourage you to get back in the black.  Dues are only $10 per year and Anna has organised Paypal for ease for members whose first currency is not USD. Alternatively, there is the Munich meeting where Peter Davidson is happy to take your money and for those in Australia, I'll do the same.

We have a small bank balance and are keen to support appropriate projects. If you have any ideas, please contact the committee.

Unfortunately, most of the notices to the listserver recently have been about stolen specimens. Please take time to review the security of your collection so these notices diminish and our communications are about helping each other.  Are collections at risk in war-torn countries? Can we help? I am aware that just because a collection is curated, it is not necessarily safe, having recently lost the teaching compactus room to a machine, as space decisions are based on how many people frequent the space how often, so if you are organised and put teaching specimens in teaching areas, you are doomed. However, nothing precious was lost and it was timely to remove low quality material to other homes. Just because it has been picked up shouldn't mean it stays.

At the IMA meeting in South Africa, September 1 to 5, 2014, the venue for the "Mineralogy and Museums" conference in 2016 will be decided, so by the Denver Show we will know where that will be. These meetings are fun and informative, and a great way to network with other curators. Consider planning to give a talk or to be part of M&M8 in 2 years' time.

We have SMMP meetings at the Tucson (February), Denver (September) and Munich (October) mineral shows. If you are able, please come along. Each year Jean puts together an SMMP Educational case, along the lines of the Show theme for Tucson and Denver. Please support her with specimens and information.

Penny Williamson

* * *

February 2014

Click on the link above to view the minutes.

* * *

museum news
Staff Changes at Rice and Tellus

The Rice NW Museum in Hillsboro, Oregon  recently appointed Julian Gray as Executive Director and Leslie Moclock as Curator, following Dr. Lara Brown's move to Denmark, where her husband will be working as a post-doc. Lara will continue to be associated with the Rice NW Museum as a member of its board. Leslie will be coming to Denver, so please make her feel welcome.

Sarah Timm has been hired to fill Julian's vacated position at the Tellus Science Museum, Cartersville, Georgia. Congratulations to all.

New contact information for all of those mentioned above can be found in our on-line roster.

* * *


The first "best practices" documents about research sampling of collections are posted on the SMMP website:

BEST PRACTICES REPORT NO. 1: Research Sampling of Collections


We are looking for more in the series - please submit your idea to the board at the Denver meeting or contact Virgil Lueth (

* * *


The SMMP Grant Program Awards are to support curatorial research and methodologies that address one or more of the Society of Mineral Museum Professionals (SMMP) mission statement goals: 1) foster recognition of mineral science collections as essential scientific, educational and cultural resources, 2) promote support for growth, maintenance and use of collections and exhibits and, 3) advance museum practice through cooperation in the development, review and dissemination of information. Amounts vary up to a maximum of $1000 per grant. Grant awards determined by SMMP Board of Directors. Grant applications are available on request. Applications are due August 1st and award notification on October 1st. Guidelines are available on our website:

* * *

SMMP Europe 2014 Meeting

Dear Colleagues,

We will, as in previous years, be organising a meeting of the SMMP (Europe) and IMA-CM during the Munich Mineral Show, Friday October 24th. For further information, please contact me at

Peter Davidson

* * *


Mary Johnson began a survey of our membership in order to compile donation information for museums. The results of her survey are available on an excel spreadsheet. To download this spreadsheet, click on the link above.

* * *


American Geological Institute (AGI)

Natural Science Collections Alliance NSCA)

Although the Society of Mineral Museum Professionals maintains no official ties with the Commission on Museums (CM) of the International Mineralogical Association (IMA), the Commission resolved at its December, 2000, meeting in Melbourne, Australia, to support SMMP's efforts in uniting mineral museum professionals worldwide.

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You are encouraged to interact with your fellow SMMP members via our list server:

Please remember that when you reply to an email sent via our list server, you will be replying to the sender, although you have the option of copying the membership.

Tony Kampf processes additions to and deletions from the list server. That way we limit the list to our membership and if a member decides that they want to be dropped from the list, Tony will know whether to send them the SMMP Newsletter by snail mail. Note that you are only able to send via the list server from your email address that is on the list server. This should be the same one that is used in our on-line roster.

* * *


SMMP dues are $10.00 U.S., payable to Anna Domitrovic, treasurer, 6118 W. Lazy Heart Street, Tucson, AZ 85713. Any directory changes or additions should be sent to Tony Kampf. In Europe, dues can be remitted to Peter Davidson, National Museums of Scotland, Chambers Street, Edinburgh EH1 1JF, SCOTLAND.

To make paying your dues easier (especially for non-US members), a PayPal account has been established and installed on our website. You can use your credit card or your own personal PayPal account. Just go to our Dues webpage.

Note that you can check your dues payment status on the SMMP on-line roster. The year shown in the last column indicates the last year for which you have paid. If you are delinquent, please remit your dues payment as soon as possible.

Remember to renew your membership. If you are planning to pay dues at the Denver meeting, help Anna by filling out a membership application with your dues payment. Do it beforehand and save time at the meeting!

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