Co-Boss at UGa's Ecology Lab Asked to Resign Now, Not Later; He Has Been Excluded from Management Meetings and Decisions

Article excerpt

Byline: REBECCA K. QUIGLEY

ATHENS, Ga. - The University of Georgia has asked Savannah River Ecology Lab co-director Carl Strojan, the lab's former assistant director, to resign on Oct. 1 rather than stay through June, when the lab is expected to close down most of its operations.

The lab's $1 million budget from the U.S. Department of Energy ran out June 1 despite last-minute protests from UGa officials, citizen groups, several U.S. congressmen and former President Carter.

Until UGa eliminated about half of SREL's workforce in July, about 110 students, researchers and support staff worked at the 50-year-old lab - an independent watchdog for the Savannah River Site, one of the energy department's nuclear processing facilities near Aiken, S.C.

The energy department, the lab's primary funding source, halved its $8 million contribution to the lab's budget in 2005 and again cut funding down to about $1 million in 2006.

Paul Bertsch stepped down as the lab's director in June but stayed on as a researcher.

David Lee, UGa vice president for research, hired Strojan and co-director Carl Bergmann, a researcher at UGa's Complex Carbohydrate Research Center. …