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Heinlein Society Announces Leadership Transition

Mike Sheffield named new President/Chairman

July 26, 2010-- The Heinlein Society ( announced today that Robert A. Heinlein Blood Drive Chair, Mike Sheffield, has been elected President/Chairman of the Society, replacing former president David M. Silver effective immediately.  "The Board voted David our thanks for his long service, and I am honored that they have chosen me to succeed him to lead the Society forward", said the new president.

"Any time a member of your founding generation retires, it is a milestone", added board member Geo Rule.  "David and his wife Andrea gave generously of their time and resources from the earliest days of the Society, and we appreciate the role they've played in allowing the Society to celebrate its 10th anniversary this year."

In explaining why the choice for Mr. Silver's successor fell to Mr. Sheffield, fellow board member Keith Kato reported, "Mike immediately seemed like the obvious choice. Everyone inside and outside the Society respects his long service, and the leadership and community-building he has exhibited over the years in leading a great group of volunteers to collecting over 7,400 pints of blood as part of the Robert A. Heinlein Memorial Blood Drive."  Added Mr. Kato, "Of course, any time you have a transition to new leadership,  it creates the opportunity to re-examine your priorities and make adjustments in the way you operate going forward --I think you'll see more of that from The Heinlein Society in the months ahead."

David M. Silver, 68, a retired attorney, was a confident of Virginia Heinlein's in the final years of her life, and spent many hours chatting with her on the internet about Robert A. Heinlein's works and legacy.  Mr. Silver became Secretary-Treasurer of THS in the early months of its existence, and along with Ginny Heinlein and founding president William H. Patterson, Jr. , was one of those largely responsible for turning the new Society into a long-term viable entity dedicated to furthering the legacy of Robert A. Heinlein.  In 2001, at the "MilPhilCon" Philadelphia Worldcon, Mr. Silver accepted Robert Heinlein's "Retro-Hugo" for Best Novella, awarded to "The Man Who Sold the Moon".  Mr. Silver succeeded Mr. Patterson as President/Chairman of THS in September of 2003.

Mike Sheffield, 50, works in the aerospace industry, and has been involved in every Worldcon blood drive since 2000, leading THS blood drive committee since 2001.  Mr. Sheffield has served on the board of directors since June, 2006.

In additional Society news, THS announced that the board had elected Deb Houdek Rule to the seat formerly held by Charles N. Brown (1937-2009), and additionally appointed her as the Society's newsletter editor.  Ms. Rule had been the Society's webmaster from 2003-2005, but in more recent days has been a contributor in the development of Robert A. Heinlein's online archives in collaboration with the Robert A. and Virginia Heinlein Prize Trust, and the University of California Santa Cruz McHenry Library Special Collections.

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The Heinlein Society was founded by Virginia Heinlein on behalf of her husband, science fiction author Robert Anson Heinlein, to "pay forward" the legacy of Robert A. Heinlein to future generations of "Heinlein's Children."