Mines News

Release Date Monday, July 25, 2022

Mines Department Head, Professor and Paleontologist Dr. Laurie Anderson Named GSA Fellow

Dr. Laurie Anderson.

Laurie Anderson, Ph.D., a professor and head of the Department of Geology and Geological Engineering and director of the South Dakota Mines Museum of Geology has been named a fellow to the Geological Society of America (GSA). This prestigious distinction is only awarded to a small percentage of leaders in her field of study.

The GSA website states that fellowship is awarded “in recognition of a sustained record of distinguished contributions to the geosciences and the Geological Society of America through such avenues as publications, applied research, teaching, administration of geological programs, contributing to the public awareness of geology, leadership of professional organizations, and taking on editorial, bibliographic, and library responsibilities.”

Laurie Anderson on a boatAnderson is a paleontologist. Her research focuses on reconstructing past environments by understanding the life, death, and fossilization processes of clams, oysters, and other marine creatures. She is an expert in paleobiology, paleoecology, taphonomy, and phylogeny of mollusks, particularly Bivalvia. She has worked all over the world, including in the Amazon, and conducted research in Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Besides field research, her work also includes research in modern and ancient coastlines, ancient freshwater lakes, statistical analysis of shape, and geochemical datasets.

Sarah Keenan, Ph.D., assistant professor of geology and geological engineering at Mines wrote the nomination letter for Anderson to the GSA. “Dr. Anderson’s contributions to the geoscience community include new discoveries in paleobiology and taphonomy, education and mentorship of the next generation of geoscientists, active engagement in professional societies, and supporting early-career and female academics. She is a dedicated teacher, academic, and mentor in the field and lab,” Keenan wrote.

“Dr. Anderson is an excellent example of world-class faculty we are fortunate to attract at Mines,” says Mines President Jim Rankin. “We’re lucky to have dedicated leaders like her on campus who serve as mentors for both students and other faculty members.” 



About South Dakota Mines  

Founded in 1885, South Dakota Mines is one of the nation’s leading engineering, science and technology universities. South Dakota Mines offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees and a best-in-class education at an affordable price. The university enrolls 2,493 students with an average class size of 24. The South Dakota Mines placement rate for graduates is 98 percent, with an average starting salary of more than $70,036. For these reasons  South Dakota Mines is ranked among the best engineering schools in the country for return on investment. Find us online at www.sdsmt.edu and on FacebookTwitter, LinkedInInstagram, and Snapchat.

Contact: Mike Ray, 605-394-6082, mike.ray@sdsmt.edu

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