David Smith PhD FE'53

Chapter Member at Large

Dr. Smith is a diversely experienced geologist and environmental scientist with a fifty-year fascination with volcanoes, earthquakes and other natural phenomena that cause vast devastation and human suffering. Educated at Notre Dame and Stanford, he taught at Dartmouth, Louisiana State University, and the University of North Carolina. In January, 1953, David, then 23 and a Navy Ensign, was elected to membership following his return from two three-month Navy deployments in Arctic waters aboard the USS Tanner (AGS-15) carrying out hydrographic surveys of uncharted areas in northwest Greenland and northern Labrador. 

Subsequently, he earned a Ph.D. in geology at Stanford, and held faculty positions at three universities.  Over a forty-year research and consulting career for various academic, Federal, and corporate sponsors, he carried out extensive geologic field work in Alaska, Pakistan, Southern Africa, and Vietnam, as well as glaciological studies on two ice stations in the Arctic Ocean.  He was promoted to Captain, USNR, in 1972, and is a founding member of the San Diego Chapter.

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