The 2004 A. Frank Alsobrook Industrial Minerals & Aggregates Distinguished Service Award
Awarded To: Sam M. Pickering, Jr.
"In recognition of significantly contributions to the workings of SME and the Industrial Minerals Division; and outstanding reputation for professionalism and accomplishments"
Sam Pickering Jr. earned B.S. (1963) and M.S. (1966) degrees in geology from Emory University and the University of Tennessee, respectively. While in school, he worked part-time for the Georgia Geological Survey (GGS), mining and quarrying companies and the Tennessee Valley Authority. In 1966, he joined the GGS as a full-time field geologist. He was promoted to director and state geologist in 1972. He led the creation of a new, geologic map of Georgia and a detailed statewide topographic mapping program. He was also responsible for technical support to the state's mining, ground water, and remote sensing industries, he advised on new land, mineral, mine reclamation, safe dams and groundwater legislation and served as state oil and gas commissioner. In 1978, he joined Georgia Kaolin as an exploration geologist. In 1985, he became exploration and lands director and was responsible for all exploration, mine planning and permitting, mined-land reclamation, and joint venture, acquisition and divestiture. In 1990, Pickering formed Industrial Mineral Services, his own mineral exploration and development company. The company provides worldwide exploration core drilling, drill-core quality analysis, mine planning, investment and mineral-product marketing advice.
Pickering has been granted two patents for white kaolin clay brightening and delamination. He was recognized in 1984 as an honored fellow of the Geological Society of America and served as president of the American Institute of Minerals Appraisers from 2002-2004. He is a certified minerals appraiser, a registered professional geologist and a member of the American Institute of Professional Geologists, the Geological Society of America, the Clay Minerals Society and the Georgia Academy of Science.
The Industrial Minerals & Aggregates Division Distinguished Service Award, established in 1995, recognizes members who have significantly contributed to the workings of SME and the Industrial Minerals & Aggregates Division; and have an outstanding reputation for professionalism and accomplishments.