Ballots will be mailed in the spring
Editor's note: Candidates for AAPG office have been given the opportunity to respond briefly to the subject: "Why I Accepted the Invitation to be a Candidate for AAPG Office." Here is the response from vice president candidates Thomas S. Ahlbrandt and Donald W. Lewis. Candidates were asked to limit their responses to 500 words.
Why I Accepted the Invitation to be a Candidate for AAPG Office
By THOMAS S. AHLBRANDT
It is an honor to be considered as a candidate for vice president of AAPG. AAPG is an organization of international recognition, and its global role on behalf of geoscientists will increase as the need for resources continues to grow.
My decision to run for this office stems from my interest in the future of AAPG and its members.
I have worked in the United States and in foreign positions, both as a member of the petroleum industry and as an employee of the U.S. Geological Survey. My focus on the future of geoscientists is a long-held concern.
As a delegate and later chairman of the House of Delegates, I sponsored the effort resulting in the formation of the Future of Earth Scientists as a standing committee of the House. As technical program chairman for the 2001 annual meeting in Denver, my interest in the future is reflected in the program emphasizing the changing role of natural gas relative to oil, petroleum systems of the world and coping with the technological revolution the industry is absorbing. During my recent tour as AAPG liaison to the 143,000-member American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), I organized a symposium sponsored by AAPG titled "Petroleum: The Past, Present and Future of a Needed Resource." The list of symposium speakers at the 1998 AAAS meeting in Philadelphia reflect the best of AAPG and included Sam Pees, William Brice, Edward David, Lee Gerhard, Arthur Green, Marcus Milling and Marlan Downey. The concept of this symposium was to raise the profile of geoscientists in the broader scientific community and look to the future; I believe these objectives were accomplished.
I am the World Energy project chief at the USGS, where I led a team that recently completed a new assessment of the conventional undiscovered oil and gas resources of the world. Products of this project are digital and focus on the quantities and location of future oil and gas resources of the world. These digital products are hopefully useful to geoscientists in all parts of the world.
These various endeavors cause me a heightened awareness of the need to plan for the future of geoscientists worldwide. The Executive Committee has an opportunity to provide direction as to the appropriate curriculum for geoscientists, guiding geoscientists to new technical horizons and mentoring younger generations of geoscientists who will provide the critical resources needed for the world. Geoscience will either become the pivotal science in this century as populations grow and resource needs escalate, according to some; or may gradually atrophy as other disciplines replace us.
I believe that geoscientists are of critical importance in the coming century, and as a member of the Executive Committee I would encourage the educational, technological and outreach components for future geoscientists to step into these roles.