Hugh Hardy

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Hugh Hardy
Hugh Hardy headshot.png
Membership Life Member


Biography Citation for SEG Life Membership

Contributed by L. C. (Lee) Lawyer

Hugh W. Hardy, an Exxon Company, USA annuitant and retired Major General, US Marine Corps Reserve, joined the Society of Exploration Geophysicists at Oklahoma University in 1947. He has participated in many activities of the SEG and the Geophysical Society of Houston. His contributions have been many and significant, illustrating his extraordinary and ongoing service.

Hugh enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserve on 2 December 1942 and was assigned to the officer training unit in Georgia Tech, subsequently undergoing boot camp at Parris Island, South Carolina. Following additional training he was commissioned a Reserve second lieutenant before being released to inactive duty in 1945 and returning to Oklahoma. He was graduated from OU in 1947 with a bachelor's in geological engineering and joined the Galveston based Humble Oil offshore seismic crew. In more than 34 years with Humble Oil, Esso Production Research, Esso Exploration, and Exxon Company USA, he held positions as junior exploration geophysicist; senior seismic interpreter; well logging research specialist pioneering in formation/velocity/porosity relationships; senior research geophysicist in the development of EPRCo's 3-D seismic surveying system; coastal zone geophysical manager; exploration department geophysical data processing supervisor; chief geophysicist North Sea; coordinator of seismic data processing and computer facilities at EDPC; Exxon International's emergency preparedness advisor; the Public Affairs Department's government relations advisor; and senior advisor of Exxon's Exploration regulatory affairs activity.

He retired in March 1981 and has had interesting accomplishments, such as surviving a hurricane on Grand Isle, Louisiana; illustrating M. M. Slotnick's Lessons in Seismic Interpretation; producing the initial monograph relating velocity >t to formation porosity with corrections for shaliness; providing the seismic interpretation effort which exposed the East Texas "slant hole" scandal; publishing, on 28 November 1966, a completion report for EPRCo entitled "3-D SeismographuA New Dimension in Seismic Exploration;" visiting all of Exxon USA's facilities, from a Kansas salt mine to the North Slope and authoring a company-wide "Emergency Preparedness Plan;" and his futile efforts to educate the Carter Administration's departments of Interior and Energy on petroleum matters.

Hugh was fortunate to have worked for Humble and Exxon because of their admirable record of supporting employees with military responsibilities. As second lieutenant, he joined the Galveston, Texas, unit and was mobilized for the Korean War in 1950. Following his release to inactive duty in 1952, Humble assigned him to its North Texas Division in Wichita Falls. Subsequently Hugh served in reserve units located there, as well as Houston, Texas; London, England; Camp Pendleton, California; Quantico, Virginia; Camp Lejeune, North Carolina; and the US Navy's Sixth Fleet in the Mediterranean. He commanded units while progressing in rank from second lieutenant through colonel before being promoted to brigadier general in 1973 and major general in 1974. In 1980, he was ordered to active duty to become the first Reserve general to assume command of an active Marine Corps facility, the Corps largest, most populous (40 000-plus amphibious training base. At retirement, 1 December 1982, he was president of the Marine Corps Reserve Policy Board and since then he continues as a consultant for Headquarters' Manpower and Reserve Affairs Division.

Hugh's SEG activities have included chairing the Governmental Affairs Committee interfacing with governmental agencies, working with the API in producing "Federal Land Use Maps," and arranging programs at the Annual Meetings. In 1985 he was elected Secretary-Treasurer and remained on the Finance Committee until 1989. He was chairman of the Membership Committee for the following three years, attempting to minimize membership losses. He was General Chairman of the Sixty-First Annual International Meeting in 1991 in Houston, which produced a modern-day attendance record of 10 670 and an all-time revenue record of more than $1 573 000. He currently is treasurer of the SEG Trustee Associates.

His activities in the Geophysical Society of Houston began in 1957 and in recent years he served as membership chairman, SEG council representative, second vice-president (1988) and president (1992). Following his term as president, he continued his quest to gain tax-exempt status for the GSH, succeeding in January 1994. Other related activities include the AAPG, AIPG, IAGC, Houston Geological Society, and the Coastal Bend Geophysical Society.

Hugh has four daughters: Karyn Parker of Alexandria, Louisiana; Kathryn Hardy of Corpus Christi, Texas; and Karolyn Ratajczak and Kay Lockard of Sugar Land, Texas. Mrs. Hardy. the former Joyce Elaine Smith of Galveston. Texas, died on 29 December 1992.