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Gabriel Dengo Memorial Award (Best International Paper)

Gabriel Dengo Memorial Award

The Gabriel Dengo Memorial Award is given each year at the Annual convention in recognition of the best AAPG paper presented at the previous year’s International conference.



Christopher Asuquo Jackson

Michael Ndubuisi Oti

Ayonma Wilfred Mode

Peter Laurence Osterloff

S. George Pemberton


Nigel Philip Mountney

Na Yan

Luca Colombera

William McCaffrey


Thomas Murphy, P.G.


Charles Henry Smith


Zamir Bega


Irene Arango


John Ross Tinnin


Jonny Hesthammer


Jennifer Rebecca Scott

Laura Clare Lawton

Rodney Harold Graham

Dean Griffin

Graeme Gordon

Tim Grow

Steven G. Crews

Andrew Simon Pepper

Niall James McCormack

John Marshall Guthrie

Caroline Burke

Benn Raino Harrison Hansen


Pedro Victor Zalan

Maria do Carmo G. Severino

Joao Alberto Bach Oliveira

Luciano Portugal Magnavita, PhD

Webster U. Mohriak

Rogerio C. Gontijo

Adriano R. Vianna

Peter Szatmari


Charles Kerans


Dale Allen Leckie

Jose Miguel De Armas Pedraza

Elvira Pureza Gomez Hernandez


Marek Kacewicz


Jose Alejandro Luquez


John Anthony Howell, PhD

Roy Conan Davies

Ron Boyd


James A. Keggin

Robert F. Marten


Alfredo Eduardo Prelat


Robert Knipe


Kevin M. Bohacs


Peter Robert Rose


John O'Leary


Martin Schoell


John Charles Van Wagoner


Chris B. Clayton


Patrick Joseph Hamilton


Frank J. Picha

Presentation of Gabriel Dengo Memorial Awards to Christopher Jackson (accepting), Michael Oti, Ayonma Mode, Peter Osterloff and George Pemberton at the Opening Session, Annual Convention & Exhibition in San Antonio, Texas on May 19, 2019.
Presentation of Gabriel Dengo Memorial Awards to Nigel Mountney (accepting), Na Yan, Luca Colombera and William McCaffrey at the Opening Session, Annual Convention & Exhibition in Salt Lake City, Utah on May 21, 2018.
Presentation of Gabriel Dengo Memorial Awards at the Opening Session, Annual Convention & Exhibition in New Orleans, Louisiana on April 11, 2010.

The recipient of the Gabriel Dengo Memorial Award is not required to be an AAPG Member. Selection of the winning paper is made only from among papers presented during the International Conference & Exhibition.

Guidelines for Consideration of Candidates

The chairman of the International Paper Award Committee is appointed by the General Chairman of the conference.

The chairman of the committee chooses a group of judges who select the winning paper according to the quality of scientific content and excellence of presentation.


The Committee’s decision is conveyed by the Chairman to the General Chairman as soon as possible following the meeting. The General Chairman then informs the President of the Association who notifies the winner.

Description of Award

The recipient is given an engraved plaque with a miniature replica of a silver trophy cup, suitable for hanging on the wall. The name of each recipient is engraved on a silver trophy cup, donated by Pinar O. Yilmaz, which is retained at AAPG headquarters. Since a significant part of the scoring is based on quality of presentation, only the individual presenting the paper receives the award. Co-authors, if any, receive a certificate and are acknowledged in press releases announcing the winner.


This award is given each year through the generosity of the Dengo family, in memory of Gabriel Dengo. Gabriel Dengo was one of the "gentlemen geologists" who became a geologist for the love of field geology, for mystery of the earth and to belong to an era of total devotion to the science of geology. He was a role model to hundreds of young geologists and was a superb friend and associate to many.

Gabriel Dengo worked on Coast Ranges of Venezuela, including the geological study for the Caracas-La Guaira highway. He was among the first of Harry Hess' students working in Venezuela for what became the very successful Princeton Caribbean Research Program. After graduation, he returned to Venezuela to work for the Ministry of Energy and Mines, during which time he helped discover one of the largest iron deposits in the Guyana Shield.

Early in 1952, Gabriel returned to Costa Rica as field geologist for Union Oil Company of California, mapping mostly in the jungle. In 1956, the company moved him to Guatemala as resident geologist. In 1962, they transferred him to New Orleans as subsurface geologist. Because of his interest in Central America, Gabriel returned to Guatemala in 1962 to work for the General Secretariat for Central American Economic integration, where he was later appointed deputy secretary. In 1965, he transferred to the Central American Research Institute for Industry (ICAITI) to organize a geological research group. While in this position, he worked in several countries of Central and South America and in the Caribbean. Later he was appointed deputy director, and in 1975, director of ICAITI. He founded the Center for Geological Studies of Central America as a means to channel many of his scientific contributions.

This award was established as the International Paper Award in 1990 by Executive Committee action. The name of the award was changed to the Gabriel Dengo Memorial Award beginning with the 2001 award.


Funding for the award is provided through the AAPG Foundation Awards Fund through a generous contribution by the Dengo Family as a lasting memorial to Gabriel Dengo.

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