Grad Student Fellowship at CU Endowed to Honor RMAG Past-President Bruce Curtis

Title: Grad Student Fellowship at CU Endowed to Honor RMAG Past-President Bruce Curtis
Author: Matt Silverman
Publication: The Outcrop, March 2006, p. 34-35

Five hundred thousand dollars has been raised to permanently endow the Bruce Curtis Graduate Student Fellowship in Geological Sciences at the University of Colorado. Financial contributions by 150 RMAG members, friends of Prof. Curtis and the CU Geology Department, and other individuals, foundations and companies within the oil and gas industry were crucial to realizing this goal.

Mary Kraus, the Department Chair, said, “We are all deeply grateful to the many alumni and friends whose generosity will allow us to provide financial support for outstanding graduate students in petroleum geology and the other subjects that Bruce Curtis taught.”

“Since most major oil companies have dropped their traditional research and training roles, university geology departments must satisfy the growing needs of energy industry personnel,” she added. “The petroleum geoscientists of the future are receiving the preparation they require at a few select universities around the country, including CU, and this will help us support their studies.”

Curtis profoundly affected the careers and lives of generations of petroleum geologists in the Rocky Mountain region. Through decades of service at CU and in the industry, he educated, mentored and led hundreds of students and professionals. Curtis is an Honorary Member of RMAG, having served as Treasurer in 1952 and President in 1956. He authored, edited and co-edited several important volumes, including the 1958 RMAG Guidebook on the Pennsylvanian and AAPG’s 1968 landmark publication, Natural Gases of North America.

A Denver native, Curtis completed his graduate studies in Geology at CU and Harvard, following service in the U.S. Navy in World War II. He worked as Rockies Regional Exploration Manager for Conoco until 1957, when he began three decades of teaching and research at CU. During that period he taught subsurface methods, geology of organic fuels, and related subjects to hundreds of undergraduate and graduate students. Dr. Curtis directed scores of graduate theses, many focused on E & P topics that are still vital today. He retired in 1983 and lives in Boulder.

Professor Paul Weimer, one of Curtis’ former students, directs CU’s program in petroleum geology. He was recently named the youngest-ever recipient of AAPG’s Distinguished Educator Award. The program is expanding, with a permanent position in reservoir geosciences filled by Professor Matt Pranter, who worked previously at ExxonMobil in reservoir modeling.

Several gifts to the Curtis Fellowship were made in memory of Gerry Grocock, who was instrumental in the fundraising process before his untimely death.

Among the many generous donors were the following: BP Corporation North America, Inc., The Bayless Charitable Fund, Bruce D. and Marcy H. Benson, Ensign Oil & Gas Inc., Samuel Gary, Jr., Carolyn Grocock, Aaron Harber, Anthony and Liz Brigham Moores, David C. Peterson, Quicksilver Resources Inc., Stephen M. Strachan, and Anna Wells and Michael Zakroff.

Deepest thanks also go to: American Geophysical Corporation, Donald Lee Baars, Terry P. Bailey, Baker Consultants Inc., Fred G. Baker, Roland Leon Baldwin, Scott Alan Bennett, Benson Foundation, Benson Mineral Group, Inc., Dudley W. Bolyard, Tom Box, William L. Bredar, Ethel H. Brende, John B. Brock, David A. Budd, Scott F. Burns, James Arthur Bush, Douglas R. Callier, Joanne Lonay Chapa, Douglas K. Childs, Circle M. Energy Limited, John R. Coash, Frank G. Cooley, Terry R. Courtright, Bruce F. Curtis, Rene G. Daigre, The Denver Foundation, Denver Geophysical Wives, Warren W. Dickinson, Robert E. Dippo, Robert D. Dougherty, The Dowling Foundation, John D. Edwards, Don L. Eicher, EnCana Corporation, Eric K. Ericson, Jerome Arlan Eyer, Carol Fielding, Neil Fishman, William Flores, Stephanie Gaswirth, Grocock-McDill Trust, Clare Gregg, Earl G. Griffith, David G. Griggs, Thomas L. T. Grose, Michael C. Hallock, O. Winston Hampton, John Conrad Harms, Richard Cundiff Hepworth, Erich Carl Heydweiller, David Jerome Hindman, S.B. Hixon, Morgan Hocker, Houston Geological Society, William Ervin Hupp, Kathryn L.K. Huwaldt, Patricia Irwin, Janet L. Kagie, E. Ann Kirkpatrick, Louise M. Kiteley, Georgia G. Kofoed, Kathy Knutson Kreidler, William D. Lancaster, Laura Lee Lang, Lario Oil & Gas Co., Mark W. Longman, Gerald G. Loucks, Steve Ludington, Marsha Morton Mander, Anson Mark, Stephen Keith Marks, John A. Masters, Terry J. Mather, Barry McBride, Betty A. McGregor, Ronald, C. McLaughlin, Dorothyan S. McMaster, Michael B. Morgan, David G. Moysey, D. Keith Murray, National Geological Services, Inc., G. A. Nelson, Connie W. Nowlan, Gary Alan Nowlan, Ocean Energy Inc., Bonnie O’Donnell-Painter, Chris A. Oglesby, Giorgio Pannella, Parson Oil, LLC, Elmer S. Parson, Mary Reimer Parson, Hannah Flora Pavlik, Frank A. Penney, James Edward Peterson, James B. Phipps, Charles W. Pollard, Forrest G. Poole, Patricia Clark Poole, Ranspot Family Trust, Henry W. Ranspot, RDD Explorations Company, Joan B. Reinhardt, Kurt Reisser, Robert Reginald Remy, Gene E. Richards, James Graham Ritchie, Lois Y. Rittenhouse, Rivington Capital Advisors LLC, John W. Robinson, James P. Rogers, John W. Rold, Samuel Gary Jr. & Associates, Inc., Donatella and Mark Scanniello, Edwin C. Schuett, Seismic Micro-Technology, Inc., Anne F. Sheehan, John Small, William R. Smith, Anna Warshawsky Stafford, Donald S. Stone, Strachan Exploration, Inc., Robert F. Sweeney, James P. Syvitski, Regina Tempel, Texas Crude Operator, Inc., Janet Bauder Thornburg, TKM Resources, LLC, John Todd, Laura Day Triplett, David Mason Uhlir, Venture Resources, Inc., Theodore R. Walker, Valerie Kindred Walker, Dederick C. Ward, Paul Weimer, K. C. Weiner, Joseph L. Weitz, Chandler T. Wilhelm, Robert Ralph Wilhour, and Pamela Leigh Wolf.