In contemplating possible topics for this address here today, foremost in my mind was my conviction that the mission of a president of a scientific society is not only to enhance that society's intellectual endeavors but also to nurture its health and well-being. Had I chosen to use this opportunity to engage in the former, I would have spent this hour enlightening you, a captive audience, about the marvels of the tapeworms of elasmobranchs! However, Mike Sukhdeo, Steve Nadler, and Robert Poulin did such a terrific job of stimulating thought about the boundary (or interface!) between parasite ecology and evolution with their contributions to this year's President's Symposium that I feel my responsibility for intellectual enlightenment has, although vicariously, already been effectively discharged. Thus, I have chosen to focus my comments on the second aspect of a president's mission. Indeed, this topic is particularly timely...

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