Frank Shipley Collins Awardees
In 1996, the Frank Shipley Collins award for meritorious service to the Northeast Algal Society, and phycology in general, was inaugurated with the recognition of Edwin Boger of Worcester State College. The award was initiated by the Executive Committee to honor professional phycologists who had supported NEAS above and beyond the call of duty.
This award commemorates Frank S. Collins (1848-1920), by vocation an accountant for the Boston Rubber Shoe Company in Malden, Massachusetts, and by avocation, an ardent collector and naturalist of freshwater and marine algae. Throughout his long phycological career, Collins wrote several books and published over a hundred papers on both marine and freshwater algae primarily from New England, but also from Pacific North America, the Caribbean, the Bahamas and Bermuda.
Another great legacy of Collins was his innumerable specimens left in a wide range of herbaria in North American and Europe, including his monumental contribution to the most extensive published exsiccata of North American algal species in Phycotheca Boreali-Americana (Collins, Holden and Setchell, 1895-1919). The preparation of this exsiccata near the turn of the 20th century, 80 sets of 51 fascicles of mostly 50 specimens each was a labor of love that fell primarily to Collins himself. All of these accomplishments were completed in the lifetime of a man with only a high school diploma and a daytime accounting job, "above and beyond the call of duty" for any naturalist of his time.