Geotimes Logo ABOUT PEOPLEMay 1998


The 1998-1999 officers for the American Geophysical Union are MARCIA K. MCNUTT, president-elect, director of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute; JOHN A. ORCUTT, general secretary, director of the Cecil H. and Ida M. Green Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Sciences at the Scripps Institute of Oceanography; and GORDON ROSTOKER, international secretary, University of Alberta. The officers will take their positions July 1.

AGU also elected section officers during its February meeting and announced two new staff members. HARVEY LEIFERT is their new public information manager, succeeding John Sanders. Leifert worked as a public affairs officer for the U.S. Information Agency and was an editor and managing editor at the Voice of America. He has served the past four years as president of the Medical Education for South African Blacks. JOHN S. DICKEY JR. becomes AGU's director of education and research, succeeding EUGENE BIERLY, now AGU senior scientist. Before joining AGU, Dickey was the dean of sciences, mathematics, and engineering at Trinity University in San Antonio. He specializes in igneous petrology.

The Society for Sedimentary Geology (SEPM) will induct new officers during its annual meeting this month in Salt Lake City. WOLFGANG SCHLAGER, Free University in Amsterdam, will serve as president; DAG NUMMENDAL, Unocal Corporation, will be a councilor for research activities; MARIA ANTONIETA LORENTE, Fillal De Petroleos de Venezuela, S.A., will serve as international councilor; J. FREDERICK SARG, Mobil Exploration Technology, becomes secretary-treasurer; and HOWARD E. HARPER, Dallas, will serve as SEPM Foundation president.

SEPM will also award its 1998 Francis P. Shepard medal for excellence in marine geology to BILAL U. HAQ, program director for the marine geology and geophysics program at the National Science Foundation. Haq earned his Ph.D. and D.Sc. degrees in marine geology from the University of Stockholm in Sweden and has authored or co-authored more than 150 papers and books on marine sciences. He is best known for his work on sequence stratigraphy and the eustatic curves of the Mesozoic and Cenozoic.

Awards will also go to: FRANK ETHRIDGE, Colorado State University, and BOB PERKINS, West Hartland, Conn., honorary members; RICHARD K. BAMBACH, Virginia Tech, Moore Medalist; ERIC MOUNTJOY, McGill University, Pettijohn Medalist; and ERLE KAUFFMAN, Indiana University-Bloomington, Twenhofel Medalist.

The 1998-1999 executive officers for the Society of Economic Geologists are: STEPHEN E. KESLER, president, University of Michigan; DAVID I. GROVES, vice president, University of Western Australia; RICHARD H. SILLITOE, president-elect, London; THOMAS A. LOUCKS, treasurer, Littleton, Colo.; PHILIP M. BETHKE, past president, U.S. Geological Survey. The officers took their positions on April 1.

The Geological Society of America (GSA) Foundation recently added four new trustees: BOB FUCHS, GSA Foundation president since 1992; DAVE MACKENZIE, consultant and former manager of Oil and Gas Exploration in London; H. CATHERINE W. SKINNER, Department of Geology and Geophysics, Yale University; and LEE SUTTNER, chair of the Department of Geological Sciences and associate dean of research and graduate studies in the College of Arts and Sciences at Indiana University.

The Association for Women Geoscientists (AWG) awarded the 1997 Susan Ekdale Field Scholarships to ALISA HUMPHREY and TIFFANY G. SKELTON. The scholarships will help the students defray the costs of their summer field camps. Humphrey started her graduate work in igneous petrology this fall at Colorado State University after graduating from Southern Utah University. Skelton will earn her undergraduate geology degree this year from the University of Utah and will work as a seismologist with Castle Inspection Services in Salt Lake City.

DANIEL SAREWITZ, formerly director of the Institute for Environmental Education (IEE) of the Geological Society of America (GSA), recently left the society to take a senior research fellow position at Columbia University. Sarewitz held the IEE position since 1995 and was a GSA Congressional Science Fellow in 1989 1990, serving as a science consultant to the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Science, Space, and Technology.

Of the 40 high-school students selected nationwide as finalists for the 57th annual Westinghouse Science Talent Search, two presented projects in geology. CHRISTOPHER MICHAEL GERSON, Ward Melville High School in Setauket, N.Y., studied colliding continental plates through laboratory modeling. MARY ELLEN MATYSKIELA, Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology in Alexandria, Va., was a finalist for her nuclear-waste disposal research. The final competition took place March 3 8, at the National Academy of Sciences in Washington, D.C. CHRISTOPHER COLIN MIHELICH, Park Tudor School in Indianapolis, won the $40,000 first-place scholarship for his invention of mathematical operations that resemble the derivative function in calculus.

THOMAS A. SIMPSON SR., a 72-year-old geologist-mining engineer, died Dec. 14, 1997, at the Veterans' Administration Medical Center in Tuscaloosa, Ala. Simpson's career at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in Alabama and the Geological Survey of Alabama focused on the exploration and development of mineral deposits, mining hydrology, development of groundwater supplies, and blasting procedures. He also taught courses in geology mining and engineering at the University of Alabama School of Engineering, worked internationally as a geological and mining consultant, and authored more than 45 reports and papers.

"He enthusiastically shared his ideas and insight with others and believed firmly in the concept of assisting others, particularly in advancement of their careers and professional achievement," says Philip E. LaMoreaux, who was state geologist for Alabama when Simpson worked with the state's geological survey. "He played an integral role in the development of the Geological Survey of Alabama... ."

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