Roy L. Lay was an American geophyscist and was the 1952 SEG Vice President, and was the 1953-1954 SEG President.
Geophysics VOL. XVII , number 4, October 1952. page 989
Education and Early Career
Roy L. LAY received his B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from The Rice Institute in 1928. Upon graduation from Rice he was employed by the Geophysical Research Corporation as an obbserver and was later promoted to computer and party chief.
Mr. Lay was employed by The Texas Company as party chief in April, 1932, and during the next several years initiated this company's reflection work in Texas, Louisiana, California, and the Rocky Mountain area. He was promoted to field supervisor in 1937, and during the next year made a supervisory trip to Colombia and Venezuela, and he was in charge of the seismic, gravity, and magnetometer work in Egypt. In July, 1943, he was promoted to assistant chief of the geophysical division and in September, 1945, was advanced to the position of assistant manager. On April I, 1950, he became manager of the geophysical division, the position which he now holds, having jurisdiction over The Texas Company's geophysical operations in the United States and Canada.
Affiliations and Service to SEG
Mr. Lay is a member of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists, Houston Geological Society, and has been a member of the Society of Exploration Geophysicists since 1935. He was Second Vice President of the S.E.G. Houston Section in 1947-1948, President for the 1948-1949 term, and served on the executive committee of the Houston Section from 1949 to 1951. He is currrently Vice President of the Society of Exploration Geophysicists and Chairman of Program and Arrangements for the forthcoming Annual Meeting.
Biography Citation for Honorary Membership
Contributed by T. I. Harkins
The man that I have the honor to present an SEG Honorary Membership Award is Roy Livingston Lay. I have known Roy more years than I care to remember but really came to know him when we worked together in 1931 and 1932 in southwest Texas for the Geophysical Research Corp. We were partners on the business end of a hand auger. This was before the days of S. H. R. (Shot Hole Rigs that is). The crew consisted of party chiefs, top computers, and observers all four of us. I'm happy to say that we've been good friends since that time. So, for those of you who do not know Roy as well as I do, here is a short biographical sketch.
Early Years and Education
Roy Livingston Lay was born in Yoakum, Texas. He attended grade and high schools in Yoakum and graduated from Rice University with a B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering in 1928. His first experience with geophysical work was in the summer of 1926 while still in college. At this time he was employed as the first commercial radio operator on a McCollum Exploration Company refraction crew which was changing over from shooting on a pre-arranged time schedule to shooting by radio signals.
Upon graduation from Rice he was employed by Geophysical Research Corporation as an Observer and was later promoted to Computer and Party Chief. Roy Lay was employed by Texaco Inc. as Party Chief in April 1932, and during the next several years initiated the company's reflection work in Texas, Louisiana, California, and the Rocky Mountain area. He was promoted to Field Supervisor in 1937 and during the next several years made a number of trips overseas in some of Texaco's early foreign exploration work. In July 1943, he was promoted to Assistant Chief of the Geophysical Division, in 1945 to the position of Assistant Manager, and in early 1950 he became Manager of the Geophysical Division, having jurisdiction over Texaco's geophysical operations in the United States and Canada. Roy Lay was transferred to Texaco's New York offices in 1954 as Assistant to the Vice-President of the Domestic Producing Department and in 1956 was moved to Foreign Operations (Eastern Hemisphere). Since 1959, he has been General Manager of Texaco's Eastern Hemisphere Foreign exploration and producing operations.
Roy Lay was one of the early members of the Society of Exploration Geophysicists, having been a member since 1935, and has been a member of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists since 1932. During the war years he was active in local regional meetings of the SEG during the suspension of national meetings and subsequently assisted in the organization of the Houston Geophysical Society in 1947. He was Second Vice-President during the first year of the Houston Society's organization in 1947-1948 and President in 1948-1949. He served on the Executive Committee of this organization from 1949 to 1951. He was Vice-President of the SEG and Chairman of Program and Arrangements for the SEG National Meeting in Houston in 1953.
He was President of the Society for the year 1953-1954. During his term as President of the SEG a concentrated effort was made to bring into full maturity the professional stature of SEG; 10,000 copies of the brochure, "Careers in Exploration Geophysics" were published. It was distributed to all high schools, colleges, and universities in the U.S. and many copies were sold to industry.
He was a member of the Honors and Awards Committee from 1955 to 1960 and Chairman in 1960. As Chairman of the Honors and Awards Committee a recommendation was made to establish the SEG Medal Award. This was done the following year, and two such Awards were given at the 31st Annual Meeting in Denver in November 1961.
The publications of Roy Lay are:
- "Repeated P-Waves in Seismic Exploration of Water Covered Areas," Geophysics, Vol. X, No.4, October 1945.
- "Our Expanding Horizons," Geophysics, Vol. XIX, No. 2, April 1954.
- "The Geophysicist in Industry," Geophysics, Vol. XIX, No. 3, July 1954.
- The Silver Anniversary Issue of Geophysics, February 1960, page 34, lists his paper, "Repeated P-Waves in * Seismic Exploration of Water Covered Areas," as one of the Distinguished Papers of Geophysics.
It is with a great deal of pleasure that I present the SEG Honorary Membership Award to a truly outstanding gentleman as well as a well-known and respected geophysicist.