The Regions Celebrate 10 Years!
Up until 1999, AAPG members living and working overseas could only be represented through their Affiliate Societies, if indeed, they were lucky enough to have one. No internationals sat on the Advisory Council, and only one member from outside North America had ever been voted onto the AAPG’s Executive Committee. Representation on AAPG standing committees was also sparse.
Ten years later the regions are entitled to 60 of the 220 seats in the House of Delegates, 6 seats on the 18 strong Advisory Council and a permanent presence on the Executive Committee. The regions have more than 75 volunteers on the various AAPG standing committees, HoD committees and on the Division Advisory councils and committees. European members hold 25% of these positions, and are being consistently recognized in the AAPG’s annual awards. This year honours went to Peter Ziegler, Mike Lakin, Finn Surlyk, Alexi Kontorovich and Akif Narimnov and a European team, Lomonosov Moscow State University, again won the prestigious Imperial Barrel Award; itself an important European initiative.
European members, and Affiliate Societies, are well represented on the Distinguished Lecturer, Student Chapter, Visiting Geoscientist, Grants-in-Aid and International Regions committees which all support strong outreach programs. In addition to broadening the AAPG’s international portfolio of conferences and research symposia, student growth has been our biggest success in the 12 months. Herman Darman has been busy setting up Student Chapters in the Netherlands, France and Germany and in September and October the Distinguished Lecture program welcomes John Kaldi of Australia’s Cooperative Research Centre for Greenhouse Gas Technologies. John will talk to Affiliate Societies and Student Chapters on Carbon Dioxide Sequestration.
In the last twelve months much discussion has gone into how to structure the AAPG as it adopts an increasingly “Global” outlook. For discussion on this you should go to http://www.aapg.org/business/ec/corporate_structure/ . David Cook, European President-elect, is part of the standing committee that worked up much of the detail for the current proposals, and has been charged with evolving them based on the various feedback received from the membership. A consensus started to develop at the various recent meetings at the Annual Conference in Denver that incorporation of the various Regions was essential, as was investing resources in the new Regional Offices. The former offers financial independence and legal protection, while the latter will give a more tailored and improved service delivery to our worldwide members. How the new AAPG organizational structure itself will look has been far more controversial, but it is anticipated that in a couple of years the European and other Regions will look much like the US structure, with individual Sections under the broader Regional umbrella.
As part of this restructuring, work will be done in the next few months to clarify how the Regions interact with the AAPG Head Office. It will introduce a fair and flexible risk-reward formula for organizing our local conferences and other meetings where European volunteers and our affiliate societies are so critical to success. Within the Regions, efforts will focus on strengthening the various programs for improved deployment to the membership. This will include setting up sub-committees for each major initiative with representation in each country where we have members. So please volunteer to work with us as we grow and strengthen the AAPG network around the world.
Peter Lloyd, an Honorary Professor at Heriot Watt University’s Institute of Petroleum Engineering, co-chairs the International Regions Committee. He is an Honorary Member of the AAPG, a past vice-president, past regional president for Asia Pacific as well as a Visiting Geoscientist and HoD delegate for Indonesia.