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Congratulations to Ed!

Ed suffering through spring snow and winds, during fieldwork on the Grand Rapids Uplands.

Ed Dobrzanski is a “fixture” at the Museum.  He had been a volunteer here before I started back in in 1993, and he has volunteered continuously for the past 20 years. Ed has done tremendous work as an amateur paleontologist, collecting, preparing, studying, identifying, and cataloguing fossils. He has contributed to paleontological field and laboratory work in a great variety of ways. For his all-round efforts, many of us are delighted that Ed has just been named as the recipient of the Katherine Palmer Award, a North America-wide award for amateur paleontologists, presented annually by the Paleontological Research Institution.

An inveterate collector with interests in a great variety of objects, Ed had a long career as a government meteorologist. When staff reductions resulted in an opportunity for early retirement, Ed took advantage of this to turn his volunteer work into a daily avocation. In his time here, Ed has contributed tremendous knowledge to the organization of fossil collections as varied as brachiopods (lamp shells), fishes, and bivalves. He has also donated many specimens to the Museum (and to other institutions such as the Royal Ontario Museum), has contributed to exhibit development and public programs, and assists with all sorts of tasks in other departments of the Museum!

Florence Zawislak (L) and Ed discuss a cartful of specimens.

My colleagues and I are fortunate to have Ed as a collaborator on many research projects. He is skilled with the essential field and laboratory tools: whether using a hammer, GPS, shotgun, survey equipment, microscope, rock saw, or lapidary grinder, Ed has considerable expertise. He takes wonderfully precise notes, understands maps thoroughly, and maintains a compendious knowledge of obscure fossil localities. Ed has been a key member of my field teams, and has also collaborated in the field with many other scientists such as Bob Elias (University of Manitoba), Dave Rudkin (ROM), Jisuo Jin (University of Western Ontario) and Jan Audun Rasmussen (Natural History Museum of Denmark). His efforts have resulted in the co-authorship of several papers, a guidebook, and many conference abstracts.

Ed Dobrzanski is a tremendous asset to the science of paleontology in Manitoba and beyond; it is wonderful to see this recognized!

Ed assisted visiting Danish researcher Dr. Jan Audun Rasmussen, who carried out field research in southern Manitoba.

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Graham Young

Curator of Geology & Paleontology

See Full Biography

Graham Young grew up in Fredericton, New Brunswick. After doing a B.Sc. in biology at the University of New Brunswick, he switched to geology and did an M.Sc. in paleontology at the University of Toronto. After completing a Ph.D. at the University of New Brunswick in 1988, Graham spent two years in Newcastle, England, studying fossils from the Island of Gotland, Sweden. He moved to Winnipeg in 1990 to do research at the University of Manitoba, and has worked at the Manitoba Museum since 1993.

At the Museum, Graham’s curatorial work involves all aspects of geology and paleontology. He is responsible for building the collections, dealing with public inquiries, and preparing exhibits. Over the years, Graham’s research has become broader in scope, moving from specialist studies of fossil corals, towards research on ancient environments, ecosystems, and unusual fossils such as jellyfish and horseshoe crabs. Most of his current field research is on sites in the Grand Rapids Uplands and elsewhere in northern Manitoba.