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Paul Weimer, GCSSEPM Honorary Member

weimerHonorary membership in the GCSSEPM is bestowed upon those individuals who have made significant long-term contributions to the understanding of Gulf Coast Basin geology and to the profession of geology, including service to the GCSSEPM. Paul Weimer has met and exceeded all of these requirements.

Paul was born on 30 October 1956 in Denver Colorado. He grew up in the foothills west of Denver, approximately 1½ miles above sea level; yet, he has spent most of his professional career studying the geology of the Gulf of Mexico one mile (or more) below sea level!!
He received his B. A. degree from Pomona College (Claremont, CA) in 1978, with honors in Geology. His undergraduate thesis was on the deep-water sandstones within the Holz Shale in the Santa Ana Mountains in southern California; this endeavor undoubtedly initiated his lasting interest in deep-water rocks. During the summer of 1978, he worked as an intern at Amoco Production Co. in Denver, CO, focusing on subsurface studies in the Williston basin. He received his M.S. degree from the University of Colorado in 1980. His M.S. thesis was an integrated field mapping and subsurface study in the Ridgway area of southwestern Colorado, along the northwestern flank of the San Juan Mountains. This field work influenced his lifetime love of Colorado geology.

From August 1980 to August 1984, he worked as an exploration geologist with Sohio Petroleum Co. in San Francisco. He focused on the North Slope of Alaska, working in exploration teams that developed prospects for Mukluk, NPRA, and the KIC at the northern portion of ANWR. He also began working on the sequence stratigraphy of deep-water deposits.

In August 1984, Paul moved to Austin where he began his Ph.D. studies at the University of Texas at Austin. During his first semester at UT-Austin, he began working in the deep Gulf of Mexico on the Mississippi Fan as part of a class project. The initial results were presented at the Fifth Annual GCSSEPM Foundation Conference. At this conference, Paul decided that his research future was in the deep Gulf of Mexico, and a significant contribution could be made if the entire Mississippi Fan could be documented in detail. Petty Ray Geophysical allowed him unprecedented access to their probe seismic data set, which became the primary data set for his dissertation. His results were printed in several different publications, including the AAPG Bulletin in 1990, for which he received the J. C. Cam Sproule Award (Best Paper).

While at UT-Austin, Paul co-organized a three-day symposium on the geology of the North Slope of Alaska for the May 1985 AAPG-Pacific Section meeting. This resulted in a two-volume publication of North Slope geology that Paul co-edited with Irv Tailleur in 1987 (Pacific Section SEPM publisher). Paul also co-organized a two-day symposium on the seismic stratigraphy of deep-water fans at the 1987 SEPM Midyear meeting. This resulted in a volume on turbidite fans published in 1991 by Springer-Verlag.

Paul completed his Ph.D. degree at UT-Austin in 1989. He then worked for Mobil’s Research and International organizations between November 1988 and July 1990. Responsibilities included studies in the Gulf of Mexico, west Texas, and many international basins.
In August 1990, Paul began teaching at the University of Colorado. He worked with Roy Kligfield to develop an applied research consortium to study the sequence stratigraphy and structural geology of the northern deep Gulf of Mexico. More than twenty years and five research consortia later, this has been the primary avenue for him to conduct research and train students for industry. The May 1998 AAPG Bulletin was dedicated to the results of his first consortium, and an entire half-day session was given to Paul and his students at the 2004 GCAGS Convention.

Paul’s work with the GCSSEPM began in 1990, when he served on the Technical Program Committee for the 11th Annual Research Conference. In 1994, he and Arnold Bouma co-convened the 15th Annual research Conference, which focused on deep-water reservoirs of the world. He served on the technical program committee for the 1996 and 1997 conference and served as Section President in 1997. Paul was the principle force in organizing the deep-water 2000 conference, which was so well attended (534), we had to close registration. Paul then served as co-convener for the 2001 deep-water systems conference, which brought in another 350 people. For all this, Paul was awarded a Distinguished Service Award in 2001. Since then, he has continued in service as a trustee of the Foundation from 2002 until present, as well as serving as an official advisor for several other conferences since then.

If all this service was not enough, for the AAPG he served as treasurer (2002-2004); chair of the Distinguished Lecture Committee (1999-2002), AAPG Distinguished Lecturer in 1998-1999, and served on numerous other committees and convention program committees. For all this work, he received their Distinguished Service Award in 2003 and Distinguished Educator Award in 2005.

In addition, Paul also has served on several SEPM committees, including 1991 technical program chair as well as helping to organize the 75th Anniversary Symposium at the 2001 Denver convention. In 2001, he was the Esso Australia Distinguished Lecturer; in 2004, the SEG-EAGE Distinguished Instructor Short Course, for which he gave a one-day short course in 24 cities in 18 countries on 6 continents. Paul has co-authored (with Roger Slatt) two books, co-edited nine books, and has published more than 120 papers.

On a personal note (Rosen), in 1997, I met Dr. Robert Weimer at a meeting and told him I was pleased that he was running for president of the section. Bob got a perplexed look on his face, then smiled, and said, “You must be thinking of my son, Paul.”  This was my introduction to Paul and I am genuinely please to say that we have been friends ever since. Paul is famous for his comment that the GCSSEPM Foundation is a “bureaucracy of one”; and I have promised him that if he will continue to give us right of first refusal on future manuscripts, we will remain a bureaucracy of one. The GCSSEPM and the GCSSEPM Foundation are pleased to have this relationship with Paul, and we are pleased to recognize his contributions with the Honorary Membership.

Roger M. Slatt
Norman C. Rosen