Pimienta Receives 2016 Mineral and Rock Physics Graduate Research Award

Lucas Pimienta will receive the 2016 Mineral and Rock Physics Graduate Research Award, given annually to one or more promising young scientists for outstanding contributions achieved during their Ph.D. research. Recipients of this award are engaged in experimental and/or theoretical studies of Earth and planetary materials with the purpose of unraveling the physics and chemistry that govern their origin and physical properties.

Dr. Lucas Pimienta received his M.Sc. in Earth sciences from the IPG of Strasbourg and his Eng.D. in Geophysics from the EOST (Strasbourg, France) in 2011. He completed his Ph.D. in rock physics at the Ecole Normale Supérieure of Paris in 2015, working under the supervision of Yves Guéguen and Jérôme Fortin. He recently received a mobility fellowship to carry out a research project on rocks’ thermal properties at the Applied Geophysics and Geothermal Energy institute of RWTH-Aachen. His research interests cover the physics and chemistry of rocks.

Pigott Receives 2016 Mineral and Rock Physics Graduate Research Award

Jeffrey Pigott will receive the 2016 Mineral and Rock Physics Graduate Research Award, given annually to one or more promising young scientists for outstanding contributions achieved during their Ph.D. research. Recipients of this award are engaged in experimental and/or theoretical studies of Earth and planetary materials with the purpose of unraveling the physics and chemistry that govern their origin and physical properties.

Jeffrey Pigott received his B.A. in sociology and M.S. in mineral physics from The Ohio State University in 2002 and 2011, respectively. He completed his Ph.D. in mineral physics under the supervision of Wendy Panero at The Ohio State University, Columbus, in 2015. He is currently working at Case Western Reserve University as a National Science Foundation Earth Sciences Postdoctoral Fellow under the mentorship of James Van Orman. His research interests include diffusion and thermodynamic properties of minerals at the extreme pressure-temperature conditions of Earth’s mantle and core.

Savage Receives 2016 Mineral and Rock Physics Early Career Award

Heather M. Savage will receive the 2016 Mineral and Rock Physics Early Career Award at the 2016 American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, to be held 12–16 December in San Francisco, Calif. The award is for promising young scientists in recognition of outstanding contributions achieved during their Ph.D. research.


The Mineral and Rock Physics (MRP) focus group of the American Geophysical Union is privileged to honor Dr. Heather Savage as the recipient of the 2016 Mineral and Rock Physics Early Career Award. Heather earned her master’s degree from University of Massachusetts–Amherst working with Michele Cooke, and her Ph.D. from Penn State University working with Chris Marone. Following her Ph.D., Heather moved to University of California, Santa Cruz as the NSF-MARGINS postdoctoral fellow, where she collaborated with Emily Brodsky. Heather is currently Lamont Associate Research Professor at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory.

Heather’s research on friction, dynamic earthquake triggering, and the structure and properties of faults is at the forefront of rock physics. Her approach to earthquake science includes a dizzying array of topics and methods, including deformation experiments, field observations, and (remarkably) organic geochemistry. Over her brief career, Heather has mentored numerous outstanding postdocs, graduate students, and undergraduates, and in doing so has single-handedly changed the gender balance in the rock physics community. Heather’s stellar research and service have made her not just a leader among early-career scientists, but a leader throughout all of mineral and rock physics. Congratulations, Heather, on this well-deserved award!

—Phil Skemer, Washington University in St. Louis, St. Louis, Mo., and President, Mineral and Rock Physics Focus Group, AGU


I am profoundly honored to receive this year’s Mineral and Rock Physics (MRP) Early Career Award, thank you to my nominators and the MRP focus group. Many people have helped me along the way, and I am especially grateful to my advisors from various stages in my career. Michele Cooke taught me the essentials of brittle deformation in the field and her strong encouragement started me down my current path. From Chris Marone I learned everything I know about friction, the joys and frustrations of experimental work, and that bringing a box of doughnuts to the lab generates a lot of goodwill. Emily Brodsky somehow crammed a lifetime of knowledge into my 3-year postdoc, most importantly that I shouldn’t shy away from big questions even if I don’t yet possess the tools to answer them.

Since arriving at Lamont, I have had the opportunity to work with amazing students, postdocs, and colleagues. Specifically, I want to acknowledge the Lamont Rock Mechanics group, past and present. These very special people make our lab a very happy place. One of the most important and enjoyable aspects of science is collaboration. It is the only way to move in truly new directions and make valuable breakthroughs. My many wonderful collaborators, near and far, have continually pushed me out of my comfort zone, and as a result have made me a better scientist.

Finally, I want to thank my wonderful family and friends for their unwavering support.

—Heather M. Savage, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University, Palisades, N.Y.

Porporato Receives 2016 Hydrologic Sciences Award

Amilcare Porporato will receive the 2016 Hydrologic Sciences Award at the 2016 American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, to be held 12–16 December in San Francisco, Calif. The award is for outstanding contributions to the science of hydrology.


If a researcher asked me why hydrology is important and what beauty it encompasses, I would answer: “read some articles by Porporato.” He has explored many facets of this discipline, finding new links between processes, and advancing fundamental knowledge. He has written works that are exemplary for clarity, elegance, and deep understanding.

Amilcare is recognized as one of the “fathers” of ecohydrology. His groundbreaking research about the interactions among climate, soil, and vegetation; the ecohydrologic drivers of carbon and nitrogen cycles; and the complex relationship between soil moisture and microbial activity are landmark studies. And these are only examples of how his work has contributed decisively to move hydrology’s boundaries toward important and fascinating new horizons. I’d like to recall here also his strong interest in fluid mechanics. Amilcare’s interest in a variety of new research areas speaks for his intellectual curiosity and love for knowledge, which have allowed him to break down artificial barriers between disciplines and unleash his creativity.

Amilcare has been an exceptional mentor for students and postdocs, as testified by a remarkable placement record in faculty positions at major research institutions around the world. Many of us have appreciated his generosity of ideas and time. He mentors junior scientists, collaborates with colleagues, and serves the science community with energy and the same youthful and contagious enthusiasm as when I first met him many years ago.

I have known Amilcare for almost 3 decades. I was lucky to see him grow as a scientist, showing from the start his great originality and depth of thought, capacity to grasp the essential aspects of the questions, and his genuine passion for study and research. These are all qualities he has kept, refined, and nurtured over the years. We expect from him still so many good ideas and new topics.

—Luca Ridolfi, Politecnico di Torino, Turin, Italy


Thank you, Luca, for your very generous words. They bring me back to 1992 when you invited me for a Ph.D. and told me: “You’ll have the opportunity to study interesting things and to travel.” I can confirm now that you were absolutely right! Indeed, I find hydrology very interesting for its connections to many aspects of physics and life. The elegant theories of fluid mechanics, thermodynamics, and probability help us deal with its complexity, while biology is required if we are to advance toward sustainability.

I accept this honor with gratitude and humility. The journey has been exciting and I owe much of the little I deserve of this award to many wonderful people: my family, the mentors and colleagues at the Polytechnic (Luca Ridolfi, professors Sordo and Butera, Roberto Revelli, Paolo Perona, Francesco Laio, Davide Poggi, Carlo Camporeale, and many others), and the inspiring and life-changing encounter with Ignacio Rodriguez-Iturbe. Here in the U.S., I’ve had the good fortune to meet new friends: especially Paolo D’Odorico, John Albertson, and Gaby Katul. Duke provided me with the freedom and support to pursue my research with exceptional students: Edoardo Daly, Stefano Manzoni, Giulia Vico, J.R. Rigby, Federico Maggi, Annalisa Molini, Francesco Viola, Gianluca Botter, Samir Suweis, Simonetta Rubol, Xue Feng, Jun Yin, Tony Parolari, Yair Mau, Mark Bartlett, Sara Bonetti, Norm Pelak, Salvatore Calabrese, and Samantha Hartzell. I have interacted with a fine group of editors with WRR and HYP. The list of thanks would be incomplete if I did not mention fruitful interactions with Mark Parlange and Andrea Rinaldo and the memorable discussions with Wilfried Brutsaert at EPFL, friends at UFPE (Brazil), and more recently Jeff McDonnel.

I am deeply grateful for the support of the hydrologic community and AGU and to the distinguished colleagues who sponsored my nomination.

—Amilcare Porporato, Duke University, Durham, N.C.

Harman Receives 2016 Early Career Hydrologic Science Award

Ciaran Harman will receive the 2016 Early Career Hydrologic Science Award at the 2016 American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, to be held 12–16 December in San Francisco, Calif. The award is for significant early-career contributions to hydrologic science.


Ciaran Harman grew up in Western Australia, where he received undergraduate degrees in Arts and Engineering with first class honors. In 2005 he began graduate studies with Murugesu Sivapalan at the University of Illinois, where he earned a Ph.D. in Civil Engineering in 2011.

I met Ciaran for the first time in 2007 at the Joint Assembly in Acapulco, Mexico. I didn’t know who he was, and he introduced himself as a student of Siva’s working on hillslope processes. He asked me details about my papers that I didn’t even remember, and for the next 3 days he basically stalked me. It was the first sign of his persistence and his desire to understand every little detail of the problem he is working on.

By the time he finished his Ph.D., Ciaran had published 22 papers. This productivity is in part due to his ability to make substantive contributions in collaborative enterprises, including the NSF-funded Hydrological Synthesis Summer Institute of 2008, and the early design meetings for the Landscape Evolution Observatory of Biosphere 2. In 2011, Ciaran joined my research group as a CZO postdoc, exploring catchment co-evolution, and the combination of Newtonian and Darwinian approaches to hydrology. His paper on Darwinian hydrology quickly became a classic on the topic.

Since starting at Johns Hopkins University he has focused on nonstationary flow and transport processes, and his work has helped establish the theory of storage selection functions for lumped transport modeling. Together, we continue to work on transport and co-evolution through two NSF-funded collaborative research projects at Biosphere2.

Ciaran is a wonderful friend and colleague, and is an outstanding mentor to his students. It has been a pleasure to see Ciaran develop from a young Ph.D. student into this year’s Early Career Award recipient.

—Peter Troch, University of Arizona, Tucson


I am grateful to AGU; to the Hydrology section and its chair, Efi Foufoula-Georgiou; to those who nominated me; and most especially to Peter Troch for his unwavering support, and generous citation. I never found Newton’s suggestion of standing on the shoulders of giants to be terribly useful. Following them around at conferences, asking lots of questions, and generally being a pest seemed a more effective strategy.

I didn’t go to grad school with the intent of being a hydrologist. One fateful day I walked into Siva Sivapalan’s office to talk about a little hillslope model I had been playing with. Siva’s response was enthusiastic. Soon we were talking about heterogeneity, scaling, and closure relations—issues that I have returned to ever since. His fascination with these issues became my own.

I have been fortunate to have the mentoring and support of some wonderful people. First among them is Siva—as I work with students of my own I understand more and more the how deft his guidance and support was. But I am indebted to so many—Kitty Lohse, for showing me what tenacity looks like, particularly in the field; Praveen Kumar, for raising my mathematical consciousness; Suresh Rao, for introducing me to transport issues; Peter Wilcock, for his faith; and many more—giants all!

I am most grateful for the opportunity to play—to play with data, to play with technology, to play with theory, and, most especially, to play side by side with others—while searching for insights into real societal and environmental issues. Play is the opportunity to wander beyond our limits, and perhaps find something worth cutting a path back to. It is the best opportunity I can hope to share with the talented students I am privileged to work with.

—Ciaran Harman, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Md.

Rosenlof Receives 2016 Yoram J. Kaufman Unselfish Cooperation in Research Award

Karen H. Rosenlof will receive the 2016 Yoram J. Kaufman Unselfish Cooperation in Research Award at the 2016 American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, to be held 12–16 December in San Francisco, Calif. The award recognizes “broad influence in atmospheric science through exceptional creativity, inspiration of younger scientists, mentoring, international collaborations, and unselfish cooperation in research.”


For exceptional creativity in research and unselfish collaboration, advancing our understanding of stratospheric dynamics, stratospheric water vapor, and ozone

Karen is well recognized as being among the world’s top leading experts in stratospheric dynamics, stratospheric water vapor, and ozone, and their relationships to climate change. A hallmark of her research is the way she conducts her research by incorporation of multiple data sources, including in situ observations from aircraft and balloon instruments as well as space-based observations from a wide variety of satellites, while exhibiting a remarkable level of creativity, inspiration, and unselfish collaboration.

Karen’s roles as lead scientist, flight planner, and forecaster in numerous aircraft field campaigns through the years has garnered her a reputation as a superb collaborator and leader who unselfishly works to incorporate the disparate objectives of multiple PIs into the flight plans, earning her wide respect from her peers. She has been a contributing author and expert reviewer for the IPCC, and both a contributing and lead author for the WMO Ozone Assessment Report. She developed three comprehensive and popular datasets for stratospheric water vapor and ozone, which she unselfishly shared with the scientific community.

Most befitting the Yoram Kaufman Award, as stated in her nominating letter, “Karen has gone far beyond her normal job responsibilities as a federal government scientist to make mentoring of young scientists a cornerstone of her professional approach. She has mentored over 20 young scientists, including an undergraduate student, a STEM teacher, and numerous graduate students and postdoctoral researchers. She has been an inspiration to many early-career women scientists by serving as a graduate or postdoctoral advisor.”

On behalf of the AGU Atmospheric Sciences section, I am pleased to present the 2016 Yoram Kaufman Award to Dr. Karen Rosenlof.

—William K. M. Lau, President, Atmospheric Sciences section, AGU


I am humbled to receive the Yoram J. Kaufman Unselfish Cooperation in Research Award from AGU. It is an honor to be included among the distinguished scientists who have received this award in the past, and, in particular, to be recognized for inspiring younger scientists.

I consider working with students, postdocs, and promising young scientists to be the most rewarding part of my job, and also serves as paying back for all the support I was fortunate to receive early in my career. I had the opportunity to be guided by some of the best, and here can only acknowledge a few. I’m extremely grateful for the guidance and support I received from my Ph.D. advisor, Jim Holton. Adrian Tuck introduced me to the world of stratospheric aircraft research and first encouraged my blending of theoretical studies with analysis of in situ and satellite data. George Reid took me under his wings when I started as a postdoc at NOAA, and Sam Oltmans patiently helped me navigate my first experience with an international scientific assessment. And, through the entire journey, I’ve had the love and support of my family.

Collaboration and teamwork are increasingly important to advance our knowledge of how climate is changing, given all the complex interactions involved. It’s been a delight to be involved with satellite, field mission, and assessment teams that are helping advance our understanding of climate processes and an honor to be recognized for those efforts.

—Karen H. Rosenlof, NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory, Boulder, Colo.

Wang Receives 2016 James R. Holton Junior Scientist Award

Yuan Wang will receive the 2016 James R. Holton Junior Scientist Award at the 2016 American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, to be held 12–16 December in San Francisco, Calif. The award recognizes “outstanding research contributions by a junior atmospheric scientist within three years of his or her Ph.D.”


For groundbreaking research advancing the understanding of the impact of aerosols on a variety of convective, mesoscale, and weather scale atmospheric phenomena

Dr. Wang’s main research involved modeling the aerosol effects on clouds and precipitation using the mesoscale cloud-resolving model and global climate models. Noticeably, he implemented an explicit two-moment bulk cloud microphysical scheme in the WRF model and developed a hierarchical modeling approach by upscaling the regional aerosol forcing to the global climate simulations. His work has led to breakthrough findings in enhancing the understanding of several key atmospheric topics, including the changes in precipitation extremes due to different anthropogenic forcings, intensification of North Pacific storm by Asian aerosol outflow with possible downstream effects over the U.S. west coast, and modulation of hurricane intensity by aerosols. In just 3 years after his Ph.D., he has already accrued an outstanding research record of 22 refereed publications (10 as first author), many of them in high-impact journals such as Nature Climate Change, Nature Communications, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and Geophysical Research Letters.

Yuan is very active in serving the community by chairing and co-chairing sessions in major conferences, providing extensive service as a reviewer. He received numerous awards, including the International Association of Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences (IAMAS) Early Career Scientist Medal (2015) and the AGU Editor’s Citation Award for Excellence in Scientific Refereeing (2013).

A statement in his supporting letter best summarizes Dr. Wang’s research talents: “Yuan has the rare combination of the ability to analyze complex climate dataset for extracting aerosol signals in a clear and concise way, and in parallel develop microphysical scheme for WRF that is capable of simulating the observed effects, as well as replicate the observations with the simulations.”

On behalf of the AGU Atmospheric Sciences section, I am pleased to present the 2016 James R. Holton Award to Dr. Yuan Wang.

—William K. M. Lau, President, Atmospheric Sciences section, AGU


Thank you, Dr. Lau and the AGU Atmospheric Sciences section awards committee. I am truly honored and humbled to be selected as the recipient of the 2016 James R. Holton Award.

Having conducted atmospheric research for the past 9 years, I am very fortunate and blessed to have had the opportunity to interact with many excellent mentors, colleagues, and collaborators in the field. I would like to express my deepest gratitude to my Ph.D. advisor, Prof. Renyi Zhang for his guidance and support, with whom I benefited enormously from his vision in atmospheric sciences and high standard in mentoring students. My special thanks also go to Jonathan Jiang, for providing me the platform and freedom of pursuing my postdoctoral research; to Zhanqing Li, Yuk Yung, Danny Rosenfeld, Jerry North, and Ruby Leung, for constantly encouraging me to achieve a higher level and supporting me in different ways; to Jiwen Fan, Hui Su, and others, for the tremendous help and inspiration in sharpening my research skills. My heartfelt gratitude and appreciation are extended to everyone I worked with at Texas A&M University, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.

The first 3 years after Ph.D. graduation is arguably the most challenging period in the career of a scientist, and I sincerely thank the AGU Atmospheric Sciences section for the establishment of this priceless award for junior atmospheric scientists named after the late Prof. James R. Holton. I certainly wish to live up to the expectations and inspiration of this award in my future professional life.

—Yuan Wang, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena

Anderegg Receives 2016 Global Environmental Change Early Career Award

William Anderegg is the first recipient of the Global Environmental Change Early Career Award. He will receive the award at the 2016 American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, to be held 12–16 December in San Francisco, Calif. The award recognizes an early-career scientist “for outstanding contributions in research, educational, or societal impacts on the area of global environmental change, especially through interdisciplinary approach.”


At the young age of 30, Dr. William “Bill” Anderegg has already firmly established an international scientific reputation as a pioneer in global environmental change. His multiscale research in global environmental change links drought, tree mortality, and long-term climate change impacts on forests across regional-to-continental scales. Bill also understands the importance of conveying the consequences of global environmental changes to the public. He has made efforts to translate climate change science studies into terms that engage the public. These efforts help inform both the public and policy makers about the drivers of the massive tree mortalities occurring over vast stretches of the forest biomes in the western United States today.

Bill Anderegg’s novel research spans from cellular to ecosystem scales to address a most fundamental aspect of climate change and its biological consequences: How does drought impact forests and the carbon cycle? Forest ecosystems store almost half of the carbon in terrestrial ecosystems today. These ecosystems are not only sensitive to climate and climate-induced feedbacks, but latent heat transfer from forests has major impacts on regional-to-continental scale climates. Thus, understanding drought and drought-induced forest mortality has broad implications for climate-related thresholds. Bill’s approaches to tackle this multi-scale question include physiological tools to understand the mechanistic basis of a biological response, modeling that integrates both spatial and time considerations, and development of strong collaborative efforts that bring together the cross disciplinary teams essential to fully tackle this ecology-climate challenge.

Bill Anderegg is an exceptional young scientist who will definitely become a leader in studying biological aspects of climate change research. He already has the credentials and international stature to make him an outstanding recipient of the Global Environmental Change Early Career Award.

—Jim Ehleringer, University of Utah, Salt Lake City


Thank you, Jim, for your kind words. I am incredibly honored to be selected as the 2016 AGU Global Environmental Change Early Career (GEC) Award recipient. I want to thank AGU, the Global Environmental Change focus group, and Rong Fu. I would like to thank the wonderful mentors who have inspired me, including Jim Ehleringer, Steve Pacala, Chris Field, Joe Berry, Terry Root, and the late Steve Schneider. And I want to thank the many, many people who have made the research I do possible, including spectacular collaborators and students, and my family.

It’s particularly humbling to be chosen in the inaugural GEC Early Career Award. The GEC supports a number of important endeavors that have greatly enriched my work, including the Tyndall and Stephen Schneider Memorial Lectures. Without Steve Schneider’s mentorship and inspiration, I would not be standing here today, and the memorial lectures are the perfect way to continue his legacy of rigorous science and public engagement.

I remember my first experience as a graduate student at AGU very clearly because it felt like riding a tsunami of two emotions—excitement and awe. Awe that so many scientists existed…and they all gathered here! And excitement at the extraordinary research in global environmental change by all of you that both addresses foundational questions about how the world works and, more importantly, seeks answers to some of the urgent challenges facing society. While the awe has subsided slightly, one of the best parts of my year involves coming to AGU and feeling the wave of excitement from so much important science and so many amazing colleagues. I look forward to many more productive and enjoyable years interacting with and contributing to the GEC focus group and AGU.

—William Anderegg, University of Utah, Salt Lake City

Betts Receives 2016 Bert Bolin Global Environmental Focus Group Award

Alan K. Betts is the first recipient of the Bert Bolin Award/Lecture of the American Geophysical Union’s Global Environmental Change focus group. He will receive the award and present this lecture at the 2016 AGU Fall Meeting, to be held 12–16 December in San Francisco, Calif. The award recognizes an Earth scientist “for his/her ground-breaking research or/and leadership in global environmental change through cross-disciplinary, interdisciplinary, and transdisciplinary research in the past 10 years.”


Alan Betts’s research “has been transformative by providing a new understanding of one of the fundamental climate processes—land-atmospheric coupling and how it varies from the diurnal to monthly time scale, with land cover, and how it may vary under environmental change. His environmental change leadership in Vermont has been exceptional. His writings, public talks and TV interviews dealing with weather, climate, climate change, energy, and policy issues have fostered positive debate; as they both clarify the climate issues we all face, while encouraging readers and listeners to explore alternative, hopeful paths for themselves, their families and society.”

—Rong Fu, President, Global Environmental Change focus group, University of Texas


I am grateful to the AGU Global Environmental Change focus group for selecting me as the first recipient of the Bert Bolin Award.

My work over the past 40 years has covered a wide range of topics central to understanding the Earth’s climate over land and ocean, and the coupling between the oceans and land surface, the atmospheric boundary layer, clouds, convection, and radiation across scales. Because I have worked as an independent scientist in Vermont for decades, this work would not have been possible without the support of so many across the globe. I would specifically like to thank Martin Miller, Anton Beljaars, Pedro Viterbo, and Gianpaulo Balsamo (and the late Tony Hollingsworth) at ECMWF for 30 years of collaboration using data to evaluate and improve the physics of their analysis-forecast system. My recent work on land-atmosphere-cloud coupling over the Canadian Prairies that this award cites would not have been possible without the foresight of Ray Desjardins at Agriculture Canada, and the generous support of other Canadian scientists. My understanding of the Amazon owes much to my Brazilian friends and collaborators, Maria and Pedro Silva Dias. Long-term support from NSF and grants from NASA made all this possible.

My role as a climate advisor in Vermont owes a profound debt to the people of Vermont, who have deep roots in the land. They see what is happening to their climate, and have reached out to me, urgently seeking understanding and answers, as ongoing climate change is transforming the state. So for more than a decade, it has been clear that my research must address these critical questions, and translate all that we know, both locally and globally, into concepts that citizens and professionals can understand and apply to their work and lives.

—Alan K. Betts, Atmospheric Research, Pittsford, Vt.

Shaar Receives 2016 William Gilbert Award

Ron Shaar will receive the 2016 William Gilbert Award at the 2016 American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting, to be held 12–16 December in San Francisco, Calif. The award recognizes outstanding and unselfish work in magnetism of Earth materials and of the Earth and planets.


It is my privilege to introduce Ron Shaar as the 2016 recipient of the William Gilbert award, in recognition of his important contributions to the study of geomagnetic paleointensity.

Quantifying the magnetic field strength over the Earth’s surface and through geologic time is one of the grand challenges in our field. Together with his advisors, Ron has developed important and innovative approaches, including novel selection of research materials, such as archeo-metallurgical slags. The results have been remarkable, showing very large and rapid changes in geomagnetic field strength on several occasions. These “Levantine spikes” appear to be robust features, and other research groups, inspired by Ron’s results, have now found equivalent features in other localities. These observations have major implications for geodynamo processes, and the repercussions are just beginning to be felt.

Ron has also done excellent fundamental research on the micromagnetic structures in these materials and on the mechanisms of remanence acquisition and stability. His study of the archeological slag using magnetic force microscopy was comprehensive and adept, integrating the observed magnetic microstructures with previous micromagnetic modeling results and with bulk-sample properties including hysteresis and anisotropy, to obtain a deep understanding of how these materials acquire and retain remanence, and how they “remember” the strength of the field in which they cooled.

Ron has also demonstrated leadership and service to the GPE research community through the development and distribution of well-designed open-source cross-platform software for analyzing paleointensity data. The Thellier_GUI software provides a rational, objective, and consistent basis for estimating the paleofield strength and for quantifying the uncertainty in that estimate, helping us all to get the most out of our experimental data.

I believe that Ron Shaar is an outstanding young scientist, an emerging leader in our field, and a superb choice for the 2016 William Gilbert Award.

—Mike Jackson, IRM, Minneapolis, Minn.


I am deeply honored to receive this award and I thank the nominators, the committee, and Mike Jackson for his kind citation. When I first visited the IRM as a graduate student the first thing I saw was Mike’s smile expressing something like “hey, you came to the right place. It’s going to be fun.” This is exactly what I felt then and what I feel now.

My path toward a career in paleomagnetism was not a straight line. Ten years ago I was an electrical engineer looking for some outdoor geological adventures more as a hobby than a career. After my doctoral advisors Hagai Ron, Amotz Agnon and Ronit Kessel from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem introduced me to paleomagetism I realized that this unique field of research is the best the scientific world can give.

I am proud and grateful for being part of our incredible Geomagetism and Paleomagnetism community. The more I get to know the people who shape and form it I realize how fortunate I am to be surrounded by such inspiring supportive and generous scientists. I can name here only few senior colleagues that I had the great privilege to learn from: Jeff Gee, Cathy Constable, Mike Jackson, Josh Feinberg, and Joe Kirschvink. Thanks for each one of you.

I will forever be grateful to my scientific parents Late Hagai Ron and Lisa Tauxe, who paved a path for me to follow with endless support and guidance. Finally, I owe a very special debt to Lisa Tauxe, my ultimate role model for uncompromising excellence and leadership and the kindest human beings I have ever met.

It is a wonderful thing to start my new position at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem with this early career award. Thank you.

—Ron Shaar, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Israel