State Geologist Honored with Citizen’s Award

Title: State Geologist Honored with Citizen’s Award
Publication: The Outcrop, March 2003, p. 15

Former State Senator Sally Hopper presents the Citizen’s Award to State Geologist and RMAG member Vicki Cowart at the AIPG Legislative Reception.

Vicki J. Cowart, Colorado State Geologist and Director of the Colorado Geological Survey, was honored January 28, 2003 by the Colorado Section of the American Institute of Professional Geologists (AIPG) for promoting the importance of scientific research and education for the benefit of the citizens of Colorado. The 2002 Colorado Citizens’ Leadership Excellence Award was presented to Ms. Cowart by former State Senator Sally Hopper at the AlPG’s Annual Legislative Reception “for outstanding scientific leadership in providing critical geologic expertise and information to all the citizens of Colorado and leadership by example to the nation.”

In her remarks, Ms. Hopper praised Ms. Cowart “for directing programs that promote safety and knowledge about the state’s geologic hazards, its mineral, fuels, and water resources.” Ms. Cowart has served as Colorado’s State Geologist and Director of the Colorado Geological Survey for the past ten years. Under her guidance, the Survey has increased its research and publications dramatically without adding any additional full-time scientists in the past eight years. Ms. Cowart and her staff have received many awards and public recognition for the scientific work they have done to inform and educate the state’s citizens about important geologic conditions and events.

Accompanying the award was a booklet full of enthusiastic endorsements for Ms. Cowart’s work from numerous Colorado citizens. In addition, many of Ms. Cowart’s colleagues from national and political offices across the country communicated their long-standing support for all the work that Ms. Cowart has done in the past ten years as Colorado’s State Geologist and the past president of the American Association of State Geologists (AASG).

Ms. Cowart “certainly is a great representative for the geologic community, both within and outside Colorado…” wrote Edmond Deal, Montana State Geologist and Director of the Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology. Lance Cook, the Wyoming State Geologist commented “You can count me among the supporters of this movement to honor (Ms. Cowart). She has done an outstanding job of representing Colorado’s citizens and has worked tirelessly for their benefit.” These sentiments were representative of those of many other state geologists as well.

In February, Ms. Cowart announced her resignation from the Colorado Geological Survey. The Citizens’ Award, in the creation stage for a number of months, is a fitting tribute to her past successes. In accepting this award, Ms. Cowart gratefully acknowledged the contributions of her staff, the geologic community, and her colleagues across the country.