February 1 Day 1060: Return to…

Normal? I’m not sure we’ll ever get back there. But its closer to “life before.”

Today was a big day. I officially became the Past-President of the Mathematical Association of America. I loved my time leading this organization for the past two years despite the wrench that the pandemic through into my plans.

My successor, Dr. Hortensia Soto, has vast experience with MAA and brings her own values and priorities to the position. I know she will lead with love and the MAA is in good hands.

I remain on the MAA Board of Directors as Past-President. It’s going to be a wonderful year supporting the MAA in a new role. Never-the-less, I have returned to the typical life of an academic with a full teaching load, struggling to find balance especially when it comes to grading.

Slowly but surely more people are spending more time on campus. In-person lunch meetings and lunch dates are becoming more frequent. Today’s meeting was the first I can remember being entirely in-person; there was no option for remote attendance. And perhaps most telling of all, today was the first time (in what feels like forever) that I had to wait for a stall to be available in the washroom.

In all seriousness, think I proved myself to be a creative and adaptable leader these last two years. I worked to do what was needed when it was required to keep MAA strong and build community during pandemic isolation. Serving as President was a highlight of my professional career. This begs the question, what’s next? Because honestly, I’m not sure I want it return to “life before.”

I guess that means I’m on the look out for my next great adventure.

Cover image: MAA’s icosahedron painted on an agar plate last night using bioluminescent bacteria. I do the painting and my husband Mark is the photographer and microbe whisperer.

Published by Jenny Quinn

Mathematician. Mother. Wife. Leader. I am a professor of mathematics at the University of Washington Tacoma. Mother of Anson and Zachary. Wife to Mark. President of the Mathematical Association of America.

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