The following is the text of a letter presented to Michael Gillett in recognition of his years of contributions to the Emirates Natural History Group. The presentation took place on 08 June 2004.
08 June 2004
The Committee and membership of the Al Ain chapter are pleased to present Mike with a lifetime membership in the Emirates Natural History Group in recognition of his world-renown research and his unselfish generosity.
In his first Newsletter article, Mike said he would "try to create 'beetle awareness' and hopefully to show that beetles can be interesting and, indeed, fun to study." That was almost 12 years ago and he has achieved his objective, and more.
Anyone who has seen one of Mike's presentations is overwhelmed by the magnificence of some of the natural world's most overlooked members. Whether he was presenting iridescent beetles or spectacularly colored butterflies, Mike shared his passion with his calm and professional style. A dozen years ago, Mike noted, "our knowledge about the insect fauna in general, and the coleoptera in particular, in this region is meager." He has changed that situation forever.
In addition to his tireless fieldwork and research, Mike has been a member of the Editorial Board of Tribulus magazine for many years, raising the stature of the nation's leading official record for naturalists. Through his work in the field and in the lab, he has, as one of his articles was titled, helped us all to see 'Something Very Wonderfully Strange'.
On behalf of countless individuals who now appreciate the beauty and importance of the natural world's "wonderful" residents, thank you, Mike.