Aldo Vesnaver

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Aldo Vesnaver
Aldo Vesnaver headshot.png
Membership Life Member


Aldo Vesnaver is honored with Life Membership for his tireless contributions to many SEG programs. He has been particularly involved in our international community, but his contributions go well beyond that. Consider the following list: organizer of the first Balkan and all of the Italian Challenge Bowls; chairman of the Membership Committee; cofounder and vice president of the Italian EAGE–SEG Section; member of the Strategic Finance Committee; member of the Governance Review Subcommittee; Chairman of the Global Affairs Committee; member of the Committee on Nominations; member of the Executive Committee of the Dhahran Geoscience Society (SEG affiliated society in Saudi Arabia); Regional Coordinator for Europe for the Global Affairs Committee; SEG Representative on the organizing committees for Geo 2002 and Geo 2004; associate editor of Geophysics and frequent contributor to The Leading Edge.


Biography Citation for SEG Life Membership

Contributed by Michael J. A. Burianyk

I can’t quite remember the first time I met Aldo, but I remember the circumstances vividly. I think probably it was at SEG’s 2000 Annual Meeting in Calgary. I watched him give a memorable scientific presentation. It had to be a memorable one since not knowing him at the time meant my memory had only the content and presentation to be impressed with. Later, most probably at that same meeting, I heard Aldo make a public comment at the Global Affairs Committee meeting—my first GAC meeting I believe—that made me spontaneously burst into fervent and appreciative applause. It was probably a good indication of how our SEG lives were to follow for the next few years, since despite my enthusiastic response, no one joined me. It was puzzling to me at the time, but since then Aldo and a few other like-minded souls have spent our SEG lives in tackling the difficult—tilting at windmills it’s seemed sometimes—and being, in our terms at least, ahead of our time. Certainly Aldo has been a far-sighted leader for those of us concerned with the globalization of SEG, and that was obvious to me from my first contacts with him.

Aldo has done an impressive amount for the science of geophysics. He received his PhD at the University of Trieste in 1995. His professional career took him from academia to Saudi Aramco for several years and then back to academic research at OGS, the Italian National Institute for Oceanography and Applied Geophysics in Trieste. There, at present, he is conducting research into joint tomographic inversion of active and passive seismic data.

Aldo has been an SEG member for 28 years, and in those years he’s served, passionately I think is the best way to describe it, on many of our committees. These include Research, Nominations, Strategic Finance, Constitution and Bylaws, Governance Review, and Book Reviews. He has been chairman of the Membership and Global Affairs Committees and was the GAC’s Regional Coordinator for Europe. On top of all that, he’s been an Associate Editor of Geophysics. And as a further topper, Aldo has been chosen as the 2010 Honorary Lecturer for Europe. To testify to his broad outlook, Aldo has been active within EAGE as well, seeing SEG and EAGE not as ideological enemies but as the complementary sister societies that so many of us devoutly wish for. For EAGE, Aldo took on the responsibility of editor-in-chief of Geophysical Prospecting as well as standing for election to the EAGE board.

There is plenty of dispute about who coined the adage “Think globally, act locally.” But there is no dispute that Aldo has taken this phrase and made it his own. During his time at Saudi Aramco, he was a member of the executive committee of the Dhahran Geoscience Society and helped to set up the first Saudi Arabian SEG student chapter. He served as the SEG representative on the organizing committees for Geo 2002 and 2004 in Bahrain. He is part of a group of farsighted Italian geophysicists that founded the Italian joint EAGE–SEG section, and he is the current vice-president. He contributed to the efforts to set up the first Italian SEG Student Chapter and was the organizer of the first Italian Challenge Bowl. He used that experience as a spring board for organizing the first Balkan Challenge Bowl in Belgrade this year.

I can think of few who deserve this honor more than Aldo. I am proud to be his follower, his colleague, and his friend, and it has been extremely gratifying to me to see the energy he’s given to develop the global nature of our society.