AAPG’s Top Awards to be Presented at ACE

Ernest A. Mancini, internationally renowned educator and a leading researcher in stratigraphy and petroleum geology of the Gulf of Mexico, both onshore and offshore, will receive the 2014 Sidney Powers Memorial Award, AAPG’s highest honor, during the opening session of the AAPG Annual Convention and Exhibition in Houston.

Mancini, an Honorary AAPG member and past elected editor for the Association, is a retired distinguished research professor in petroleum geology and stratigraphy at the University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa.

Joining Mancini at the top of this year’s AAPG awardees list is past AAPG president Peter R. Rose, also an Honorary member and retired founder and president of Rose & Associates, Austin, Texas, who is this year’s recipient of the Michel T. Halbouty Outstanding Leadership Award.

Also honored at the opening session will be James A. Hartman, this year’s winner of the L. Austin Weeks Memorial Award, the AAPG Foundation’s highest award.

They and 49 others will be honored during the ACE opening session, set for Sunday, April 6, at 4 p.m. at the George R. Brown Convention Center.

The program is preceded in the same room at 3 p.m. by the AAPG Imperial Barrel Award ceremony.

In addition to honoring the awardees, the multi-media spiced opening session also will feature the presidential address from AAPG President Lee Krystinik.

AAPG awards, approved by the Executive Committee, are presented annually to recognize individuals for service to the profession, the science, the Association and the public.

Mancini, when he receives his award in Houston, will become the 67th Powers medalist in AAPG history, first awarded in 1945 to legendary geologist Wallace E. Pratt.

The Powers Award is given annually in recognition of distinguished and outstanding contributions to, or achievements in, petroleum geology.

Mancini began his career with Cities Service Co. as an exploration geologist in 1974. Two years later he became assistant professor in the department of geological sciences at the University of Alabama (UA).

He was appointed state geologist and director for the Geological Survey of Alabama, and oil and gas supervisor and director for the State of Alabama Oil and Gas Board in 1982, where he served simultaneously until 1996.

Mancini founded the UA’s Center for Sedimentary Basin Studies, an interdisciplinary geoscience research center, in 1998 and served as interim chair of the Department of Geological Sciences.

Mancini has been the recipient of several AAPG awards including the A.I. Levorsen Award, in 1980 and the Distinguished Educator Award 2000. He also served as AAPG elected editor 2004-07.

He was appointed Distinguished Research Professor of the University of Alabama in 2005, was named the Blackmon-Moody Outstanding Professor in 2007, and he received the Burnum Distinguished Professor Award and became professor emeritus in 2010. (See related story, page 16.)

Rose, who is the eighth recipient of the Halbouty Outstanding Leadership Award, given in recognition of outstanding and exceptional leadership in the petroleum geosciences, received AAPG Honorary membership in 2002.

His book “Risk Analysis and Management of Petroleum Exploration Ventures” has been widely referenced by the industry since 2001. He was columnist of the AAPG EXPLORER “Business Side of Geology,” 2001-03, and served on the AAPG Executive Committee as president-elect/president from 2004-06. (See related story, page 44.)

Hartman, an AAPG Honorary member, will receive the Weeks Award in recognition of his “extraordinary philanthropy and service” to and for the AAPG Foundation.

Biographies and citations of all award winners will be included in a future BULLETIN.

Award winners who will be honored along with Mancini, Rose and Hartman in Houston are:

Honorary Member Award

Presented to members who have distinguished themselves by their accomplishments and through their service to the profession of petroleum geology and to AAPG.

  • John M. Armentrout, Cascade Stratigraphic Inc., Damascus, Ore.
  • István Bérczi, MOL Group, Budapest, Hungary.
  • Donald D. Clarke, consultant, Lakewood, Calif.
  • Martin D. Hewitt, Calgary, Canada.
  • James S. McGhay, Mid-Con Energy, Tulsa.
Norman H. Foster Outstanding Explorer Award

Presented to members in recognition of distinguished and outstanding achievement in exploration for petroleum or mineral resources, with an intended emphasis on recent discovery.

  • Orion Lea Skinner, Whiting Petroleum, Parker, Colo.

Skinner was responsible for Whiting’s Pronghorn Field discovery and his contributions to Bakken exploration in Stark County, N.D. (See related story, page 50.)

Robert R. Berg Outstanding Research Award

AAPG’s newest award, presented to honor a singular achievement in petroleum geoscience research.

  • Kevin M. Bohacs, ExxonMobil Upstream Research Co., Houston. (See related story, page 48.)
  • Robert G. Loucks, Bureau of Economic Geology, Austin, Texas. (See related story, page 52.)
Distinguished Service Award

Presented to those who have distinguished themselves in singular and beneficial long-term service to AAPG.

This year there are nine recipients of the honor:

  • Hussain M. Al-Otaibi, Saudi Aramco, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia.
  • Donna S. Anderson, EOG Resources Inc., Golden, Colo.
  • William P. Bosworth, Apache Egypt Companies, Houston.
  • Peter Burri, Burri Oil and Gas Consulting, Basel, Switzerland.
  • Michael R. Canich Jr., Sylvan Energy, Pittsburgh.
  • David R. Cook, retired, Maldon, England.
  • Mark Cooper, Sherwood Geoconsulting, Calgary, Canada.
  • Brett J. Fossum, ConocoPhillips, Houston.
  • Steven M. Goolsby, Goolsby Brothers & Associates, Lakewood, Colo.
Grover E. Murray Distinguished Educator Award

Presented for distinguished and outstanding contributions to geological education, both at the university level and toward education of the general public.

  • Joseph A. Cartwright, University of Oxford, Oxford, England.
  • Gregor P. Eberli, University of Miami, Miami, Fla.
  • Charles Kerans, University of Texas at Austin.
  • Donald R. Lowe, Stanford University, Stanford, Cali.
Public Service Award

Presented to recognize contributions of AAPG members to public affairs – and intended to encourage such activities.

  • John B. Curtis, Colorado School of Mines, Golden, Colo.

Curtis is being honored for his extensive work in educating government officials and the public on matters involving the energy industry. (Related story will be in the May EXPLORER.)

Pioneer Award

Presented to long-standing members who have contributed to the Association and who have made meaningful contributions to the science of geology.

This year there are two winners of the award:

  • Vincent Matthews III, Leadville Geology, Leadville, Colo.
  • Thomas L. Thompson, Geo Thompson Discovery Inc., Boulder, Colo.
Wallace E. Pratt Memorial Award

Presented to honor and reward the author(s) of the best AAPG BULLETIN article published each calendar year.

  • Sonja Spasojevic and Michael Gurnis, for “Sea Level and Vertical Motion of Continents from Dynamic Earth Model Since the Late Cretaceous,” which appeared in the November 2012 BULLETIN.

Spasojevic is with BP, Houston, and Gurnis is with the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, Calif.

Robert H. Dott Sr. Memorial Award

Presented to honor and reward the author/editor of the best special publication dealing with geology published by the Association.

  • John A. Breyer for Memoir 97 “Shale Reservoirs: Giant Resources for the 21st Century.”

Breyer is with Marathon Oil, Houston.

J.C. “Cam” Sproule Memorial Award

Presented to recognize and reward younger authors of papers applicable to petroleum geology.

  • Joseph M. English, for the paper “Thermomechanical Origin of Regional Fracture Systems.”

English is with Petroceltic International, Dublin, Ireland.

John W. Shelton Search and Discovery Award

Presented in recognition of the best contribution to the “Search and Discovery” website in the past year.

  • Neil K. Basu, Gervasio J. Barzola, Hector Bello, Paul R. Clarke and Oswaldo E. Viloria for the paper “Integrated Eagle Ford Reservoir Characterization – Which Data is Critical to Collect and Best Describes Well Performance?”

All are with Pioneer Natural Resources, Irving, Texas.

George C. Matson Award

Presented to honor and reward the best oral presentation at the 2013 AAPG Annual Convention and Exhibition in Pittsburgh, Pa.

  • Stephen G. Holtkamp, for the paper “A More Complete Catalog of the 2011 Youngstown, Ohio, Earthquake Sequence From Template Matching Reveals a Strong Correlation to Pumping at a Wastewater Injection Well.”

Holtkamp’s co-authors are Brian Currie and Michael R. Brudzinski. (All are with Miami University, Oxford, Ohio.

(A story on Holtkamp’s work appeared in the September 2013 EXPLORER.)

Jules Braunstein Memorial Award

Presented to honor and reward the best poster presentation at the 2013 AAPG Annual Convention and Exhibition in Pittsburgh, Pa.

  • Satinder Chopra and Ritesh Kumar Sharma, for the poster “New Seismic Attribute for Determination of Lithology and Brittleness.”

Both Chopra and Sharma are with Arcis Seismic Solutions, Calgary, Canada. Chopra also is the current editor of the EXPLORER’s popular Geophysical Corner column.

Gabriel Dengo Memorial Award

Presented to honor and reward the best oral presentation at the 2013 AAPG International Conference and Exhibition in Cartagena, Colombia.

  • Irene Arango, with Chevron, Houston, for the paper “Evaluating Hydrocarbon Expulsion Efficiency from Shale Reservoirs.”
Ziad Beydoun Memorial Award

Presented to honor and reward the best poster presentation at the 2013 AAPG International Conference and Exhibition in Cartagena, Colombia.

  • Jaime Castillo, Victor Castro, Alfredo Ramirez, Carlos Mora, Paola Blanco and Claudia Ceballos, for the poster “Cupiagua Sur XN1Z – Drilling Experience: Response and Uncertainty Management for Unexpected Overburden Sections.”

All of the co-authors are with Equion Energia, Bogota, Colombia.

Geosciences in the Media Award

Presented for notable journalistic achievement in any medium, which contributes to public understanding of geology, energy resources or the technology of oil and gas exploration. This year there are two awards being presented – one to the author and on-air host of a popular television series, the second to a project/film that enjoyed a major U.S. theatrical release in 2013 and has been seen by millions of people around the world.

Stories on both winners will be featured in the May EXPLORER.

  • Scott D. Sampson, author of “Dinosaur Odyssey: Fossil Threads in the Web of Life,” and consultant/on-hair host of the Discovery Channel series “Dinosaur Planet.”
  • The “Switch” Energy Project, a documentary film and media outreach initiative that takes a look into the world’s energy future. The Project includes an ongoing website, Facebook page, social media and the Switch Energy Lab.

Accepting the award will be past AAPG president Scott Tinker, who served as the film’s co-producer and narrator, and “Switch” director and co-producer Harry Lynch.

House of Delegates Honorary Member

The AAPG House of Delegates’ highest award.

  • Edward W. Heath, independent, Durango, Colo.
House of Delegates Distinguished Member
  • Paul W. Britt, Texplore, Houston.
  • Margaret Anne Rogers, Margaret A. Rogers Assoc., Los Alamos, N.M.The ACE panel clearly is a step forward.

At press time, Yeilding said the tentatively defined objectives of the panel at ACE include:

  • Develop a picture of what GREAT scientific communication is like.
  • What role can AAPG play in this communication?
  • What can AAPG and other societies learn from other industries, disciplines, media?
  • What are the key messages geologists need to share with the world (STEM, industry)?

“We need to decide our key messages and how to show them in a memorable, impactful and empowering way,” Yeilding said. “We have so many audiences – yet other industries take really complicated messages and figure out how to communicate them simplistically and in an engaging way.

“What lessons,” she pondered aloud, “can we learn from them?”

Something to Talk About

It is anticipated that the erudite individuals set to participate in the Communicating Our Science effort at ACE likely will have some unique ideas and timely suggestions.

(See accompanying box for panelist information.)

“There will be discussions of what and how to communicate about sensitive topics in energy and science, and how new media are changing our communications with other scientists and the public,” Yeilding noted.

Yeilding and co-moderator Colin North, also an AAPG member, plan an “open discussion” of topics such as:

  • How to explain energy issues to friends, colleagues and environmental activists.
  • Where energy originates.
  • Pros and cons of potential energy sources for the future.
  • Hydraulic fracturing.
  • How 21st century media affect how we get scientific information.
  • Why industry members are, or aren’t, publishing scientific information that is important for those in the industry to do their jobs.

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