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ESIP Members Recognized for Service to the Earth Science Information Community

The Federation of Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP) honored three leaders in the field of Earth science information at the January 2016 ESIP meeting.

The Martha Maiden Lifetime Achievement Award for Service to the Earth Science Information Community was given to Ruth Duerr from the Ronin Institute for Independent Scholars. The award, named for Martha Maiden, Program Executive for Earth Science Data Systems at NASA, honors individuals who have demonstrated leadership, dedication and a collaborative spirit in advancing the field of Earth science information.

“Ruth’s dedication to the principles of Earth science information access and sharing are exemplified by her service as an ESIP liaison on many community initiatives, both nationally and internationally, that have led to improvements in capabilities and understanding of the issues necessary to facilitate access to and sharing of Earth science information,” says the nomination committee’s citation.

Duerr has served in various leadership roles within ESIP. She has also contributed to the success of many ESIP activities and inspired other members of the community to contribute in the same spirit. Duerr served as the founding chair of the ESIP Data Stewardship Committee and helped grow that committee out of the earlier ESIP Preservation and Stewardship cluster, which she also led.

Denise Hills from the Geologic Survey of Alabama was honored with the President’s Award in recognition of her significant contributions to ESIP during 2015. ESIP President Peter Fox, who selected Hills for the award said, “Denise understands ESIP and knows the culture of the organization, and the impact of her involvement is significant. ESIP now has vibrant new leadership as a result of her work.”

Soren Scott from the Ronin Institute for Independent Scholars is the recipient of the ESIP Catalyst Award. This award honors those who have brought about positive change in ESIP and inspired others to take action. “Soren was able to make stagnant and dormant ESIP initiatives become active again in a very short period of time,” said Fox. “She isn't afraid to make things happen and demonstrated this by invigorating the Web Services and Semantic Web Clusters.”

The three honorees received their awards at a reception on January 6, 2016.

About ESIP
The Federation of Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP) is a community of innovative science, data and information technology practitioners. ESIP members catalyze connections across traditional institutional and domain boundaries to solve critical Earth science data stewardship, information technology and interoperability issues. Through this work, ESIP improves Earth science data management practices and makes Earth science data more discoverable, accessible and useful to researchers, policy makers and the public. Learn more at or follow @ESIPfed on Twitter.

Rebecca Fowler, Communications and Outreach Director