What to Expect from The Delegates’ Voice
First of all, I would like to thank you all for the honor of being elected secretary/editor for the House of Delegates. I would also like to thank my predecessor, Laura Zahm, for all her help and setting a high newsletter standard, and to my opponent in the election, H W “Dub” Peace II, for all of his gracious support, and, of course, to Regina Gill at the AAPG Headquarters. In addition, I would like to thank Jim Cobb, Director and Jerry Weisenfluh, Assistant Director of the Kentucky Geological Survey-University of Kentucky for supporting my participation in HoD affairs.
This first issue of The Delegates’ Voice, along with future issues, will be e-mailed to all members of the House of Delegates representing Affiliated Societies and International Regions throughout the world, as well as to active AAPG members. It will also be posted on the AAPG HoD website.
My duties, until the next annual meeting in Houston, include putting together three informative, interesting and enlightening issues of The Delegates’ Voice, serving as chair of the Minutes Approval and Newsletter Committees and, most importantly, providing a critical communication link between the Delegates and membership on activities occurring within the House of Delegates, committees, Regions, Sections, and Affiliated Societies. Within each issue there will be a section dedicated to each of these. In addition, future issues will also include individual profiles on delegates and information on the next officer candidates.
Chairs of HoD committees, Presidents of Regions, Sections and Divisions, including members in leadership positions will be asked to provide updates. Many of you will be called upon to write an article. Others are encouraged to become more active and voluntarily submit your ideas, an opinion, a story or a comment. By active participation, all Delegates have the opportunity to assist the House in accomplishing more and achieving greater success in attaining the goals of the organization. Your diverse knowledge could result in positive change. Rather than just talking about the issues, become active in resolving them. Let your voices be heard; it could result in effective changes resulting in continued success of AAPG into the future.
The HoD Newsletter committee is made up of myself, Patrick Gooding (Eastern Section) Chair and Vice-chairs Robin Diedrich (Rocky Mountain Section), David Hawk (Rocky Mountain Section), and Jeffrey Lund (Gulf Coast Section). To address HoD business, our chair, David Hawk, has selected 56 experienced individuals from throughout the U.S. and the World, representing every region and section to serve as officers on nine committees. Members of these committees will be working for you during the HoD mid-year meeting in Boise, Idaho, November 11-14.
What AAPG Means to Me
After several years of urging by my thesis advisor and mentor, Roy Kepferle, former USGS mapper and delegate from Kentucky, I finally joined AAPG and became an active member in 1982. At this time, I was a full-time graduate student at Eastern Kentucky University, completing my Masters Degree in Petroleum Geology while working full time for the Kentucky Geological Survey at the University of Kentucky. Prior to joining I had attended, along with several students, two AAPG Eastern Section meetings. However, at the first national meeting that I attended as a professional, I knew no one. I decided then that every day while attending a conference, I will meet 10 new people. Well, you can imagine after 28 years how this has snowballed. I have continued that practice everywhere I go.
The very first time that I gave an oral presentation at an AAPG meeting, I was nervous; so nervous that I was on the verge of becoming ill. Sitting in the first row of the audience was no other but Gerald Friedman. I knew for sure I was dead or going to die after he was finished with me. I was wet from head to foot. I could feel my socks soaked. I tried to talk as slowly as possible to leave as little time for questions. However, Gerry was kind to me. He did ask the first question and he agreed with my answer. He later saw me in the Exhibit Area and told me that I did a good job. This meant so much to me and gave me confidence to speak in public. Now no one can shut me up.
I followed Dr. Kepferle as a delegate for three years in the 1980s. However I was not again elected until 2004. Moments after taking the reigns as Chair of the House, Valary Schulz made a call for help. I volunteered my services and she appointed me as Chair of the Credentials Committee. I served as chair in this position for the next four years and as a member for the next two. Someone apparently thought I was doing a good job helping to keep the House in line. I have also served as Chair of the AAPG Preservation of Geoscience Data Committee and have been a member of the GeoTours Committee. Working on these committees, and with AAPG leadership, has given me invaluable experience and insight. Along the way I have met many wonderful individuals including Pat Gratton, Will Green, Don Clarke and George Bole, just to name a few who have supported me. Being a member of AAPG afforded me the opportunity to grow as a geologist, to develop confidence, create opportunities, gain experience and foster friendships that will last a lifetime.