Several years ago, I was asked to become Editor of the Journal of Parasitology. The Council inquired how I would organize our Editorial Board. I informed them that I wanted to divide our discipline into distinct fields and appoint an associate editor who would have the responsibility for each one. One of the areas I wanted to include was genetics/evolution. My feeling at the time was that this part of parasitology was about to take off and I wanted someone who was at the cutting edge, in other words, a real leader.

For several years before that, I had made it a priority at our annual meeting to go and listen to any paper that dealt with genetics or evolution. At our meeting in Vancouver in 1989, I heard a paper dealing with ascaridoid phylogeny using ribosomal-RNA sequence analysis that was read by a young...

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