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Yildirim Dilek

Yildirim Dilek
The Miami University

2009 GSA International Division Distinguished Career Award

Presented to Yildirim Dilek

Citations by Paul T. Robinson and John Wakabayashi

Citation by Paul T. Robinson

It gives me great pleasure to present the 2009 GSA International Division Distinguished Career Award to Professor Yildirim Dilek of Miami University. This award is meant to recognize individuals who have made numerous, significant contributions to the advancement of Earth Sciences and who have provided extraordinary service to the GSA and to the international community at large.

Professor Dilek has succeeded admirably in both areas. He has had a long career as a distinguished scientist whose speciality is the origin and tectonic significance of ophiolites and oceanic crust. He has published more than 100 major papers directly related to ophiolite genesis and is considered one of the leading ophiolite specialists in the world. Just a few of his major contributions include a new classification of ophiolites, elucidation of the role played by arc-trench rollback in ophiolite formation, recognition of Archean oceanic crust in greenstone belts and the role of ophiolites in the geodynamic development of the Alpine-Himalayan, Cordilleran, and Caledonian orogenic belts. In addition, he has contributed significantly to our understanding of mantle dynamics and crustal evolution in both collisional and extensional tectonic environments through his original research, particularly in the Aegean and Mediterranean regions. The breadth and significance of Professor Dilek’s scientific contributions are quite remarkable.

In addition to his many scientific contributions, Professor Dilek has an unmatched record of service to the national and international geoscience communities. He has served as Editor or Associate Editor of many world-class journals, including the GSA Bulletin and Geology. In his editorial capacity Yildirim provided opportunities for international scientists, particularly those from developing countries, to publish their science in the mainstream international literature. In addition, he has convened many excellent symposia and special sessions on contemporary topics at numerous international meetings, and has organized the contributions from these meetings into important thematic volumes and edited books. These publications have received excellent reviews, and are widely read and cited. Yildirim has made the annual meetings of the Geological Society of America truly diverse and international by inviting many top scientists and young researchers from around the world to his sessions and symposia, and by obtaining funds and travel grants allowing them to participate.

Yildirim’s contributions to GSA include serving as President of the International Division and the History of Geology Division, as a member of the Publications Committee, Chair of the Penrose Committee, and many others. He is currently the USA representative on the UNESCO Scientific Board and the International Geological Correlation Program (IGCP), and is a member of the US Science Advisory Committee (USAC) on Scientific Ocean Drilling.

Yildirim’s many scientific and service contributions have already been widely recognized. For example, in 2002 he was elected a Fellow of the GSA, in 2007 he was awarded the GSA Distinguished Service Award for “outstanding scientific and editorial contributions to the international earth sciences community,” and in 2008 he received the Neil Minor award of the National Association of Geoscientists (NAGT) for “exceptional contributions to the stimulation of interest in the earth sciences.” He is a Distinguished Professor of Geology at Miami University.

For his many scientific and service contributions, Yildirim is a most worthy recipient of the 2009 International Division Distinguished Career Award of the Geological Society of America.

topCitation by John Wakabayashi

Paul, it is a great pleasure for me to be able to help honor Yildirim’s enormous contributions in science and service which you have detailed so well. I wish to give a personal perspective that illustrates just how deserving Yildirim is of this award. From when I first met Yildirim as a fellow graduate student at UC Davis, it was clear that Yildirim had the talent and drive to accomplish exceptional things. As our friendship continued over the years I hoped, perhaps daydreamed, that I might someday be in a position to honor him as a citationist for a major award such as this.

In many ways I see this not only as a chance to give recognition to Yildirim’s great achievements, but also, to say “thank you”, and I believe that when I say “thank you” I am speaking on behalf of so many geoscientists around the world and in this room. There a huge part of Yildirim’s contributions that is not so much part of the written record. He has helped so many geoscientists around the world get their research publicized and published that might otherwise have languished. I am one of those individuals. Whether by direct collaboration, invitations to conferences and symposia, invitations to submit papers to special volumes that he edited, or just plain encouragement, Yildirim has provided opportunities for us.

As many of you (and me) have experienced, he has also helped get many involved in service, and my own involvement with the International Division/Section, and with GSA in general, is a result of Yildirim’s efforts. In all of his endeavors, Yildirim has had a strong international flair to his networking, for it is hard to find a country that Yildirim has not connected with researchers. A part of his bringing together researchers from other countries is that he has always reminded North Americans about the work of those in the international community that they might overlook.

Finally, I think it is safe to say that much of Yildirim’s building of international bridges has been aided by his vibrant personality, sense of humor, and the friendship he has extended to so many. His company at conferences and in the field has certainly made those experiences more enjoyable and memorable for me and for so many of us. So I think I speak on behalf of many of you when I say to Yildirim: “Congratulations for a honor well deserved” and follow it with an emphatic “Thank you Yildirim, for all that you’ve done for and given to us”.


top2009 Distinguished Career Award — Response by Yildirim Dilek

Paul, it is a great pleasure for me to be able to help honor Yildirim’s enormous contributions in science and service which you have detailed so well. I wish to give a personal perspective that illustrates just how deserving Yildirim is of this award. From when I first met Yildirim as a fellow graduate student at UC Davis, it was clear that Yildirim had the talent and drive to accomplish exceptional things. As our friendship continued over the years I hoped, perhaps daydreamed, that I might someday be in a position to honor him as a citationist for a major award such as this.

In many ways I see this not only as a chance to give recognition to Yildirim’s great achievements, but also, to say “thank you”, and I believe that when I say “thank you” I am speaking on behalf of so many geoscientists around the world and in this room. There a huge part of Yildirim’s contributions that is not so much part of the written record. He has helped so many geoscientists around the world get their research publicized and published that might otherwise have languished. I am one of those individuals. Whether by direct collaboration, invitations to conferences and symposia, invitations to submit papers to special volumes that he edited, or just plain encouragement, Yildirim has provided opportunities for us.

As many of you (and me) have experienced, he has also helped get many involved in service, and my own involvement with the International Division/Section, and with GSA in general, is a result of Yildirim’s efforts. In all of his endeavors, Yildirim has had a strong international flair to his networking, for it is hard to find a country that Yildirim has not connected with researchers. A part of his bringing together researchers from other countries is that he has always reminded North Americans about the work of those in the international community that they might overlook.

Finally, I think it is safe to say that much of Yildirim’s building of international bridges has been aided by his vibrant personality, sense of humor, and the friendship he has extended to so many. His company at conferences and in the field has certainly made those experiences more enjoyable and memorable for me and for so many of us. So I think I speak on behalf of many of you when I say to Yildirim: “Congratulations for a honor well deserved” and follow it with an emphatic “Thank you Yildirim, for all that you’ve done for and given to us”.