GSW 1547: the 2019 Bradley lecture

The Geological Society of Washington
founded 1893

WEDNESDAY, November 13, 2019
MEETING # 1547

The 2019 Bradley Lecture

R. Steven Nerem,
University of Colorado,
Measuring Sea Level Change from Space: What are the measurements telling us?

Abstract: Satellite altimetry (TOPEX/Poseidon, Jason-1, Jason-2, and Jason-3) and satellite gravity (GRACE and GRACE Follow-On) measurements have provided a wealth of new information on how sea level has been changing over the last few decades. This is giving us important informations about the causes of sea level change and about how it will evolve in the future. This talk will review these satellite technologies, summarize the changes we have observed, and discuss what this tells us about future sea level change. Our future under climate-driven sea level rise is becoming clearer, but there are still important questions to be answered.

Meeting flyer to print and post at your institution

Refreshments at 7:30 p.m. Formal program at 8:00 p.m.
John Wesley Powell Auditorium
2170 Florida Avenue NW, Washington, DC


Draft minutes from the 1546th meeting

Here’s a link to a draft of the minutes from the October 23rd meeting of the Society. Members, please review them and send any corrections or identifications to Meeting Secretary Megan Holycross at Thanks for your attention to the details!

GSW venue survey: relocate or stay?

Since its founding in 1893, the Geological Society of Washington has held its meetings at the Cosmos Club, which had been founded as a social club with John Wesley Powell and several other noted geologists among its initial members. The Cosmos Club charges us both a rental fee and a per-drink charge; in 2018/19 the average cost per meeting was about $1,115. The American Geophysical Union (AGU) has now made a proposal to host our meetings at its facility (about a 7-minute walk north of the Dupont Circle metro station, with a parking deck directly across the street) at a flat cost of $900 per meeting (including all drinks). Details of their offer can be viewed here.

AGU is offering us this significantly lower rate for a period of 3 years. The AGU facility is a carbon net-zero building with many sustainability amenities, has more modern projection and recording technology, and would associate GSW with the largest organization of Earth science professionals in the world. However, it is not yet known how relations with an organization so much larger than the Cosmos Club might impact GSW’s routine and membership. The GSW Council had hoped that we could have at least one “trial” meeting at the AGU facility this fall for the Bradley Lecture on Nov. 13 so we booked their large conference room, and AGU confirmed that reservation. Subsequently, AGU had a higher priority group that they wanted to host in their conference room, so they asked us to move. AGU has offered to reimburse the GSW for the rental of the Powell auditorium at the Cosmos Club, and we were able to secure that room again for the Bradley lecture on Nov. 13.

This poll is a nonbinding referendum to get the GSW membership’s initial reactions to the proposed move to AGU as our venue. The issue will be discussed by the GSW Council at its meeting on 23 October. There will be no final decision on a move until spring 2020, after we have had an opportunity for at least one “trial” meeting at the AGU building.

The options under consideration are:

(1) move all GSW meetings to the AGU facility
(2) keep all GSW meetings at the Cosmos Club
(3) split GSW meetings between AGU and Cosmos Club

This poll will be open for about a week. Please complete the poll by Sunday, October 20th.

You must enter your email address to ensure that each member only completes this survey once. The email identification information will be removed by the pollster before the results are shared with Council. (In other words, all comments will be “anonymized” before any GSW officer sees them.)

Proposal from AGU to host GSW meetings

Here is the proposal from AGU to host future GSW meetings at AGU headquarters (a few blocks away from the Cosmos Club, near the intersection of Florida Avenue and Connecticut Avenue NW).

Draft minutes from the 1545th meeting for review

Here are draft minutes from the last meeting. Members, please review these and send any corrections to Meeting Secretary Megan Holycross at <>. Thank you for your attention.

GSW 1546

The Geological Society of Washington
founded 1893

WEDNESDAY, October 23, 2019
MEETING # 1546

The Johns Hopkins University

Primate Evolution at La Venta, Colombia

Dickinson College
The Space Between: Porosity production in the critical zone

U.S. Geological Survey
Powell 150, the Sesquicentennial Colorado River Exploring
Expedition, and the continued legacy of John Wesley Powell

Refreshments at 7:30 p.m. Formal program at 8:00 p.m.
John Wesley Powell Auditorium
2170 Florida Avenue NW, Washington, DC

Meeting flyer to print & post at your institution

Draft minutes of the 1544th meeting of GSW, for review by members

Members of the Society,

Please take 3.1 minutes to read through this draft set of minutes from our Sept. 11 meeting, and email any omissions or corrections or additions to Meeting Secretary Megan Holycross at

Thanks for your attention to this brief but important process.

GSW 1545: 2 landslides + 1 crustal evolution

The Geological Society of Washington
founded 1893

WEDNESDAY, October 2, 2019
MEETING # 1545

DALIA KIRSCHBAUM, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center
Finding the Slippery Slope: Opportunities to Investigate Landslides from Space

MONG-HAN HUANG, University of Maryland
Monitoring seasonal slow-moving landslide and hazard in Aizawl, India from space

TAMARA CARLEY, Lafayette College
Investigating proto-continental crust construction using very young (Icelandic) and very old (Hadean) zircon



Share the news: Print & post this flyer at your institution. Thanks!


Refreshments at 7:30 p.m. Formal program at 8:00 p.m.

John Wesley Powell Auditorium
2170 Florida Avenue NW, Washington, DC

Two opportunities for funding to attend IGC in Delhi, India (March 2020)

At our most recent meeting, Ester Sztein noted two funding opportunities for young geoscientists who are keen to travel to Delhi for the 36th International Geological Congress next year.

  1. “GEOHOST” from the National Academy of Science
  2. IGC travel grants from a consortium of institutions including the Geological Society of America, the Geological Society of America Foundation, and the U.S. National Committee for Geological Sciences

Please share with those who are eligible.

Job Alert: Cataloging technician with the Smithsonian’s NMNH

This post describes a job opportunity that may be of interest to members of the GSW community:

Contract Position: Cataloging technician – David Clague Collection

Contractor shall provide professional, technical, non-personal services to the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, Department of Mineral Sciences, Division of Petrology and Volcanology, National Rock and Ore Collections. Contractor will organize, catalog and capture specimen data for one half of the research collections of Dr. David Clague, a gift from the Monterey Bay Aquatic Research Institute (MBARI). The collection currently resides in 138 drawers at MSC, and consists of approximately 3860 specimen lots of volcanic submarine rock samples collected either as dredge samples or dive samples from Hawaii, the Hawaiian Ridge and Emperor Seamounts, Juan de Fuca Ridge, Gorda Ridge, Blanco Facture Zone, California Seamounts, Iceland, Reunion Island, Socorro Island, and the Gulf of Alaska, and includes not only hand samples but grain mounts, thin sections, and other associated preparations. The work to complete 69 drawers (the first half of the collection) is estimated to take 10 months to complete.

Desirable qualifications include:

  • a bachelor’s degree in earth science or a related physical science
  • experience working with museum specimens
  • experience working with Axiell EMu or similar collection management software
  • experience working with Microsoft Excel

The work will take place at the Museum Support Center in Suitland, Maryland. The contractor will have access to the facility between the hours of 8:00am and 5:00pm, Monday through Friday. The contract will require an estimated 10 months of work, and the period of the contract shall not exceed one year. Liability insurance through the Smithsonian Institution is required.

A copy of this announcement, including the Request For Quote, Statement Of Work, and any updates related to the announcement, is available at To apply for this contract, please send your bid, along with a cover letter, resume/CV, and contact information for two references, to Leslie Hale ( before September 30, 2019.

The Smithsonian Institution is an Equal Opportunity Employer.