Division Honors & Awards


Rip Rapp Archaeological Geology Award

In 1983, the division estabished the "Archaeological Geology Division Award" for outstanding contributions to the interdisciplinary field of archaeological geology. In 1993, the award was officially renaimed the "Rip Rapp Archaeological Geology Award" in honor of George "Rip" Rapp, Jr. Rip was one of the primary individuals responsible for establishment of the division and generously established a division award fund with the GSA Foundation. Donald L. Johnson was the first recipient of the renamed award.

Learn more about the Geoarchaeology Division.


Gilbert H. Cady Award

The Cady Award is presented to individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the field of coal geology. As defined by the Division, "coal geology refers to the field of knowledge concerning the origin, occurrence, relationships and geologic characteristics of the many varieties of coal and associate rocks, including economic implications".

This award is generally made annually, but may be withheld in any year where there are no recommendations made. Funds for the award are derived from interest from the Gilbert H. Cady Memorial Fund which is administered by the GSA Foundation, which accepts personal and corporate donations.

Learn more about the Energy Geology Division.


Edward Burwell, Jr., Award

The Edward Burwell, Jr., Award, established by the Division in 1968, honors the memory of one of the founding members of the Division and the first chief geologist of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. It consists of an embossed award certificate. This award is made to the author or authors of a published paper of distinction that advances knowledge concerning principles or practice of engineering geology, or of related fields of applied soil or rock mechanics where the role of geology is emphasized. The paper that receives the award must (1) deal with engineering geology or a closely related field, and (2) have been published no more than 5 years prior to its selection. There are no restrictions as to the publisher or publishing agency of the paper. The author or authors of the selected paper need not be a member(s) of the Environmental and Engineering Geology Division or of the Geological Society of America and need not be a resident(s) or citizen(s) of the United States.

Learn more about the Environmental and Engineering Geology Division.


Outstanding Contributions in Geoinformatics Award

The Outstanding Contributions in Geoinformatics award will be made to an individual who has contributed in an outstanding manner to geology through the application of the principles of Geoinformatics. The individual will be a member of GSA. Normally, a single award will be made annually, but in any particular year may be withheld if the management board decides that no suitable candidate has been nominated. The award will be presented at the annual GSA meeting.

Learn more about the Geoinformatics Division.


George P. Woollard Award

This award is given annually to recognize outstanding contributions to geology through the application of the principles and techniques of geophysics.

Learn more about the Geophysics and Geodynamics Division.


Biggs Earth Science Teaching Award

The Biggs Award, which recognizes innovative and effective teaching of earth science among early career faculty, is the Geoscience Education Division’s Named Award. Earth science instructors and faculty from all academic institutions engaged in undergraduate education, who have been teaching full-time for 10 years or less are eligible. Part-time teaching is not counted in the 10 years. Nominees may self-nominate for this award.

An award of $750 is made possible as a result of support from the Donald and Carolyn Biggs Fund, the GSA Geoscience Education Division, and GSA's Education & Outreach Programs. An additional travel reimbursement of up to $500 is available to the recipient to attend the award presentation at the GSA annual meeting.

Learn more about the Geoscience Education Division.


History and Philosophy of Geology Award

The Mary C. Rabbitt Award is presented annually by the Geological Society of America's History and Philosophy of Geology Division to an individual for exceptional scholarly contributions of fundamental importance to our understanding of the history of the geological sciences. Achievements deserving of the award include, but may not be limited to, publication of papers or books that contribute new and profound insights into the history and philosophy of geology based on original research or a synthesis of existing knowledge.

Learn more about the History and Philosophy of Geology Division.


O. E. Meinzer Award

The O.E. Meinzer Award is presented annually to the author or authors of a published paper or body of papers of distinction that advanced the science of hydrogeology or some closely related field. Originally restricted to works published within the five calendar years preceeding the year of the award, the Hydrogeology Division bylaws were amended in 2004 to permit publications from any year to be considered. The O.E. Meinzer Award Committee of the Hydrogeology Division makes a recommendation to the GSA Council which makes the final decision and announces the award.

Learn more about the Hydrogeology Division.


GSA International Distinguished Career Award

The Distinguished Career Award will be given to a geologist who has made numerous, distinguished, and significant contributions that have clearly advanced the international geological sciences through service and or scientific activities. The award will consist of a plaque inscribed with the name of the recipient, the name of the award, the name of the Section, and the emblem of The Geological Society of America. The award will be presented at GSA International's annual business meeting.

Learn more about GSA International.


Israel C. Russell Award

The Israel C. Russell Award is a new award of the Limnogeology Division and is awarded for major achievements in Limnogeology through contributions in research, teaching and service.  Nominations should consist of a letter describing the Nominee's accomplishments in the field of limnogeology (broadly defined and including limnogeology, limnology and paleolimnology), service to students and teaching, and contributions to GSA, as well as a Curriculum Vitae. The Nominee need not be a member of the Division or of GSA, but must have made valuable contributions to the Society. The dossiers of nominees who did not receive the award in any given year will be retained and considered for two succeeding years; thus, nominations are valid for a total of three years. Updated information for carry-over candidates may be sent to the Division Treasurer during the ordinary call for nominations. Israel C. Russell Award Committee members are encouraged to initiate nominations for the Award.

Nominations are currently being accepted until 15 March.
Nominations should be forwarded electronically to the Division Treasurer David Finkelstein, finkelstein@hws.edu.

Learn more about the Limnogeology Division.


MGPV Distinguished Geologic Career Award

The MGPV Distinguished Geological Career Award will go to an individual who, throughout his/her career, has made distinguished contributions in one or more of the following fields of research: mineralogy, geochemistry, petrology, volcanology, with emphasis on multidisciplinary, field-based contributions. This award emphasizes a geologic and multidisciplinary approach. Geological work is by nature generalistic and has an important field component, with Earth as the natural laboratory.

Nominees need not be citizens or residents of the United States, and membership in the Geological Society of America is not required.

Learn more about the Mineralogy, Geochemistry, Petrology, & Volcanology Division.


G. K. Gilbert Award

The award is named for G. K. Gilbert, who 100 years ago clearly recognized the importance of a planetary perspective in solving terrestrial geologic problems. The G. K. Gilbert Award is presented annually for outstanding contributions to the solution of fundamental problems in planetary geology in the broadest sense, which includes geochemistry, mineralogy, petrology, geophysics, geologic mapping, and remote sensing. Such contributions may consist either of a single outstanding publication or a series of publications that have had great influence in the field.

Presentation of the G. K. Gilbert Award is made during the annual business meeting of the Division held in association with the Annual Meeting of the Society.

Learn more about the Planetary Geology Division.


Kirk Bryan Award for Research Excellence

The Kirk Bryan Award for Research Excellence is given for a publication (within past 5 years) of distinction advancing the science of geomorphology or Quaternary geology.

Learn more about the Quaternary Geology & Geomorphology Division.


Laurence L. Sloss Award

The Sloss award is given annually to a sedimentary geologist whose lifetime achievements best exemplify those of Larry Sloss — i.e., achievements that contribute widely to the field of sedimentary geology and through service to GSA.

Learn more about the Sedimentary Geology Division.


Structural Geology and Tectonics Career Contribution Award

It is awarded to an individual who throughout his/her career has made numerous distinguished contributions that have clearly advanced the science of structural geology or tectonics. Nominees need not be citizens or residents of the United States, and membership in the Geological Society of America is not required. The Career Contribution Award cannot be given posthumously, unless the decision to give it was made before the death of the awardee.

Learn more about the Structural Geology and Tectonics Division.


Geobiology and Geomicrobiology Distinguished Career Award

This award is given annually to recognize sustained excellence in research, mentoring, service, and leadership for the geobiology and geomicrobiology community throughout the awardee’s career. The award will be presented at the annual GSA meeting.

Learn more about the Geobiology and Geomicrobiology Division.


Geology and Health Division Meritorious Service Award

The award recognizes outstanding contributions to the mission of the Geology and Health Scientific Division. The awardee must be a member of the Geology and Health Scientific Division.

Learn more about the Geology and Health Division.