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Wednesday, January 19, 2000

UH oceanographer
joins elite group

David Karl is named a fellow in
the American Geophysical Union

By Helen Altonn


University of Hawaii David Karl, a University of Hawaii biological oceanographer, has joined an elite group of scientists elected as fellows in the American Geophysical Union.

In informing Karl of the fellowship, union President John Knauss said the honor -- one of few conferred by the organization -- is "awarded to scientists who have attained acknowledged eminence in one or more branches of geophysics."

Karl was cited "for contributions and leadership in microbial ecology, molecular ecology and biochemistry, and for advancing our understanding of the relationship between the microbial community structure and biogeochemical cycles."

He was awarded a fellow certificate at a recent honors banquet in San Francisco.

Knauss said the number of fellows elected each year is limited to no more than 0.1 percent of the organization's total membership. Karl this year was one of four fellows named from ocean sciences. The others were from the mainland.

The fellowship is the latest of many honors received by Karl, 49. In 1998 he was awarded the G. Evelyn Hutchinson Award, the highest honor presented by the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography.

The society cited him for "leadership in the fields of methods development, microbial ecology, molecular ecology and biogeochemistry, for analysis of whole ecosystems in the Pacific and Antarctic oceans, and for exemplary teaching, mentoring and citizenship.

He also was named one of UH's "Ninety Fabulous Faculty" on the university's 90th anniversary in 1997. Other awards include the Presidential Young Investigator Award from the White House and National Science Foundation and the UH Board of Regents Excellence in Research awards for junior faculty in 1985 and senior faculty in 1994.

Karl joined UH in 1978 after earning a doctorate degree from Scripps Institution of Oceanography in La Jolla, Calif. He has participated in more than 70 major oceanographic cruises and been on more than 30 research dives.

He also has published numerous scientific papers. Most recently, Science magazine published Karl's findings of bacteria beneath the Antarctic ice sheet.

Karl is a member of the affiliate faculty of the Bermuda Biological Station for Research and a research oceanographer in the U.S. Antarctic Program, among other scientific affiliations. He also has served on state and community committees and boards.

Select company

Other UH scientists who have been elected as fellows in the American Geophysical Union:

Bullet C. Barry Raleigh, dean of the School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology.
Bullet Jay McCreary, professor of oceanography.
Bullet Klaus Wyrtki, emeritus professor of oceanography.
Bullet David Bercovici, professor of geology and geophysics.
Bullet Klaus Keil, Hawaii Institute of Geophysics and Planetology director and professor.
Bullet Fraser Fanale and Tom McCord, planetary researchers and professors in HIGP.
Bullet Tobias Owen, astronomer, Institute for Astronomy.

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