G. Jeffrey Taylor received the Shoemaker Distinguished Lunar Scientist Award at the 2011 Lunar Science Forum. Taylor, a planetary science Professor in the Hawai’i Institute of Geophysics & Planetology, University of Hawai’i (Manoa), specializes in planetary volcanology, igneous processes and extraterrestrial materials. Taylor uses a combination of petrology, geochemistry, field observations and remote sensing and theory to address problems in planetary science.

“In view of his many fundamental and far-reaching contributions to lunar science and his leadership efforts such as serving as the founding director of the Lunar Exploration Analysis Group, Dr. Taylor is exceptionally deserving of this medal,” said Yvonne Pendleton, director of the NASA Lunar Science Institute. “We are proud to present him with this honor.”

The Shoemaker Distinguished Lunar Scientist Award is an annual award given to a scientist who has significantly contributed to the field of Lunar Science throughout the course of their scientific career. The first Distinguished Lunar Scientist Award was given posthumously to Dr. Gene Shoemaker and presented to his wife Carolyn for his many contributions to the lunar geological sciences. The award was subsequently named after Dr. Shoemaker and includes a medal with the Shakespearian quote “And he will make the face of heaven so fine, that all the world will be in love with night.” Last year’s Shoemaker award was presented to Don E. Wilhelms.

About G. Jeffrey Taylor
Taylor is recognized for being both a successful researcher working at the cutting edge of planetary science and a sublime communicator in diverse professional, public, and educational forums. An HIGP faculty member since 1990, Taylor’s professional interests range from laboratory studies of rocks and meteorites to geologic field observations to remote sensing, all combined to understand planetary processes that operate on Earth, Moon, the planets, and asteroids. He is involved in planning future missions to the Moon and Mars, in the use of robotics for field geological studies, remote sensing mapping to understand planetary composition and geologic evolution, and developing methods to prospect for resources on the Moon and Mars. In addition, Taylor serves as associate director for space science for the Hawaii Space Grant Consortium and was Director, from 1998-2002, overseeing statewide K-14 educational programs in space science and exploration. He serves tirelessly at the university as academic advisor, teacher, mentor, and leader on a variety of teams and panels for NASA and the greater scientific community. Taylor’s achievements in scientific discoveries and publications are matched by his career-long, deep dedication to education and engaging the public in the excitement of science through workshops, public talks, and writing. He Received the Carl Sagan Medal in 2008.

Taylor’s gift for science writing spans time, space, and audiences, including his novel, “Impact!”, coauthored with R. V. Fodor in 1979. Taylor’s first book for children, A Close Look at the Moon, was awarded the Outstanding Science Trade Book for Children in 1980 and was followed in 1983 by his second award- winning book for young readers, Volcanoes in Our Solar System. Taylor’s popular writing appears in Scientific American, Natural History, The Planetary Report, and Elements, among other publications. In addition, his opinions are sought by print and online science writers, and he appears frequently on radio and in television news and science documentaries. He has written an educational program on CD-ROM called Explore the Planets with Tasa Graphic Arts. Taylor’s educational products also include NASA classroom activities, a teacher’s guide on exploring the Moon, online hands-on activities (Exploring Planets in the Classroom: http://www.spacegrant.hawaii.edu/class_acts/), and the exemplary online educational science journal Planetary Science Research Discoveries (http://www.psrd.hawaii.edu) cofounded with HIGP colleague, Linda Martel. The PSRD website sheds light on the science questions that researchers are actively pursuing about our Solar System and explains how the answers are discovered and what they mean. Taylor’s ability to combine clear language and humor makes him one of the most enthusiastic and articulate voices in science today, very much in the tradition of Carl Sagan himself.

Posted by: Soderman/NLSI Staff

Posted: Jul 20, 11:10 am

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