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Contact: Christa Stratton
Geological Society of America

2014 medals and awards of the Geological Society of America

Boulder, CO, USA – The Geological Society of America will recognize outstanding scientific achievements and distinguished service to the profession at its 2014 Annual Meeting & Exposition in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. GSA's highest honors, the Penrose Medal, the Arthur L. Day Medal, and the Young Scientist Award (Donath Medal) will be received by Susan W. Kieffer of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Lisa Tauxe of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography–UC San Diego, and Francis A Macdonald of Harvard University, respectively.

These awards and other honors will be celebrated at the GSA Annual Meeting; members of the media are cordially invited to attend:


Susan W. Kieffer, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, has been named GSA's Penrose Medalist in recognition of her many seminal research contributions to a broad cross section of geosciences. Kieffer's interests in geological physics include planetary sciences, geological fluid dynamics–including geothermal, epithermal, and volcanic environments, solid-state geophysics and mineral thermodynamics, shock wave physics, and river hydraulics and river environments. Nominator Stephen Marshak noted that her work continues to influence research directions, and "in keeping with her long standing priority that science be made accessible to the public," she is reaching out to broader audiences through her work on the National Research Council and her writing for non-expert audiences. Kieffer was elected a Fellow of The Geological Society of America in 1982. She was awarded GSA's prestigious Day Medal in 1992.

Lisa Tauxe, Scripps Institution of Oceanography–University of California, San Diego, has been awarded the Arthur L. Day Medal for outstanding distinction in contributing to geologic knowledge through the application of physics and chemistry to the solution of geologic problems. Nominator Neil Opdyke credits Tauxe as having "established at Scripps one of the premier paleomagnetics research facilities in the world." Supporter Kenneth Kodama adds that, "she has worked to provide a better understanding of the history and behavior of the Earth's magnetic field through geologic time." Tauxe was elected a Fellow of The Geological Society of America in 2003.

Francis A. Macdonald, Harvard University has earned the Young Scientist Award (Donath Medal) and a cash prize of US$10,000 for outstanding achievement in contributing to geologic knowledge through original research that marks a major advance in the earth sciences. Francis' Ph.D. research entailed mapping, stratigraphic synthesis, and chemostratigraphy in three disparate, structurally complex or poorly understood late Proterozoic sedimentary successions. Nominator Galen Halverson writes that in that and subsequent research, Macdonald "has demonstrated an uncanny ability to identify previously poorly mapped regions that are critical for developing and testing lofty tectonic and paleoclimatic models." At a young age, Macdonald has already made several fundamental contributions across multiple fields, including solid earth geophysics to climatology and glaciology to geochemistry and paleobiology.


Photos of the GSA award recipients are online at http://www.geosociety.org/awards/. Citations and responses from the 2014 GSA medal and award winners will be posted on this site after the 2014 GSA Annual Meeting & Exposition.

See http://www.geosociety.org/awards/divisions.htm for GSA Division awardees and http://www.geosociety.org/members/newFellows.htm for GSA's newly elected Fellows.


Read more about GSA's medals and awards at http://www.geosociety.org/awards/aboutAwards.htm.

The Geological Society of America, founded in 1888, is a scientific society with more than 25,000 members from academia, government, and industry in more than 100 countries. Through its meetings, publications, and programs, GSA enhances the professional growth of its members and promotes the geosciences in the service of humankind. Headquartered in Boulder, Colorado, USA, GSA encourages cooperative research among earth, life, planetary, and social scientists, fosters public dialogue on geoscience issues, and supports all levels of earth science education.


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