My deepest thanks to the many people who gave generously of their time, their expertise, and their wisdom. They made this book immeasurably better and more insightful: Karl Bates, Sandra Blakeslee, Rick Borchelt, Chris Brodie, Merry Bruns, Robert Cooke, Keay Davidson, Tinsley Davis, Cornelia Dean, Terry Devitt, Joanna Downer, Sharon Dunwoody, Juliet Eilperin, Leslie Fink, Catherine Foster, Jon Franklin, Sharon Friedman, Lynne Friedmann, Don Gibbons, David Goldston, Chris Hildreth, Deborah Hill, Earle Holland, Michael Holland, Wendy Hunter, Deborah Illman, David Jarmul, Jim Keeley, Seema Kumar, Harvey Leifert, Jennifer Leland, Bruce Lewenstein, Alisa Machalek, Sally Maran, Stephen Maran, Maureen McConnell, Kim McDonald, Julie Miller, Steve Mirsky, Jeff Nesbit, Sue Nichols, Joe Palca, Ben Patrusky, David Perlman, Henry Petroski, Ginger Pinholster, Paul Raeburn, Rosalind Reid, Andrew Revkin, Joann Rodgers, Carol Rogers, Cristine Russell, David Salisbury, Tom Siegfried, Francis Slakey, Cathy Yarbrough, Leah Young, Patrick Young, and Bora Zivkovic.
I also thank the organizations that have made my career, and this book, possible. My professional home for some four decades has been the National Association of Science Writers, and my friends in that organization have enriched both my professional and personal life. The Council for the Advancement of Science Writing has also taught me much about science and about communication through its New Horizons in Science Briefings. For decades, that meeting has offered a savory intellectual smorgasbord of exciting science and deep insights. I also owe deep thanks to the staffs of two of the nation's leading science organizations—the American Association for the Advancement of Science and Sigma Xi, the Scientific Research Society—for their professional and personal comradeship. Their dedication to fostering communication among researchers is critical to the country's scientific and technological excellence. And, I have benefitted from working with the public affairs professionals in the leading federal research agencies—NASA, the National Institutes of Health, and the National Science Foundation. Their skills and dedication have offered invaluable lessons in how to inform the public about the discoveries made possible by public research support. I also owe a great deal to the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, for which I've long had the pleasure of writing. HHMI has provided particular inspiration because of its commitment to supporting not only research excellence but also excellence in communicating that research.
I should emphasize that, while I have drawn on the experiences and insights of all these scientists, journalists, PIOs, and institutions, this book reflects my own perspective on research communication, and any errors are entirely my own. I welcome corrections and insights that will make this book better.
Finally, I offer my deep gratitude to my wife, Joni, who has offered crucial support and unfailing enthusiasm, propping me up when mine faltered.