David Simpson

At the Fall Annual Meeting of the American Geophysical Union (AGU) in December 2012, David Simpson was one of three former staff and students of the School to be honoured for outstanding contributions to geophysical research and service.

David Simpson (Ph D student 1970-1973) was awarded the Waldo E Smith Medal for ‘extraordinary service to geophysics through progressive and dedicated leadership of the Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology (IRIS)’. After graduation from ANU, David Simpson worked as a research scientist/senior research scientist at the Lamont-Doherty Geological Observatory of Columbia University on the seismic activity induced by the filling of water reservoirs and on satellite remote sensing. His ‘temporary’ move from the position of Associate Director for Seismology, Geology and Tectonophysics at Lamont to the presidency of IRIS in 1991 has culminated in continuing leadership over more than 20 years of this large and highly successful NSF-supported university consortium. On account of its success in facilitating essentially all US university-based research in seismology, IRIS has become the model for the operation of shared scientific facilities in geophysics and beyond.

We in RSES are proud and delighted to share in the AGU’s recognition of the outstanding achievements of this distinguished alumnus.

Ian Jackson
12 April 2013