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Iain SamsonUWindsor professor Iain Samson will receive the 2021 Duncan Derry Medal for significant contributions to the science of economic geology in Canada.

Geologist honoured by recognition of peers

The Mineral Deposits Division (MDD) of the Geological Association of Canada has awarded its highest honour to UWindsor professor Iain Samson.

Dr. Samson, a researcher in the School of the Environment, will receive the 2021 Duncan Derry Medal, awarded annually to the outstanding economic geologist who has made significant contributions to the science of economic geology in Canada.

“I am extremely grateful, honoured, and humbled by being awarded the Derry Medal, not least of all because of the many outstanding geoscientists who have previously been awarded the medal,” he says.

“My achievements are in no small measure due to the collaborations that I have had and to the many students who I have been able to supervise and mentor during my time at the University of Windsor, and so my thanks go out to all of them."

Samson is an authority on critical metallic mineral deposits. Beginning with his seminal work on the Silvermines SEDEX deposit in Ireland, he has developed and advanced geochemical and mineralogical models in ore genesis, ranging widely from seafloor and basinal ore systems to magmatic-hydrothermal environments.

Joel Gagnon, director of the School of the Environment, calls Samson an exceptional scientist and economic geologist whose passion extends to a diversity of mineral deposit types and techniques, which has enabled him to make a number of significant contributions to research, teaching, and service within the University as well as in professional societies and associations.

“Iain’s significant and positive contributions to the discipline and to these organizations have advanced the profile of economic geology nationally and internationally,” says Dr. Gagnon.

“His enthusiasm has not abated over the years and he continues to make significant contributions to economic geology — one of the most significant being his sound mentorship of the next generation of economic geologists.”

Samson’s previous honours include the Mineralogical Association of Canada’s Berry Award and the MDD’s Julian Boldy Award. He has served as president of the Canadian Federation of Earth Sciences and the Mineralogical Association of Canada, and as a member of NSERC’s Grant Selection and Discovery Accelerator Supplement committees.

The Derry Medal will be presented to Samson in November at the association’s conference in London, Ontario.

“It is always gratifying when you are told that someone enjoyed a class, a presentation, or a paper that you have written,” says Samson. “On a grander scale, when your peers deem you worthy of an award such as the Derry Medal, it validates the contributions you have made to your field of endeavour.”

—Sara Elliott

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