Montana State University

Ocean explorer to give Friends of Stegner Lecture March 4

February 18, 2010 -- MSU News Service

Sylvia A. Earle, currently Explorer in Residence at the National Geographic Society, will speak March 4 in Bozeman.   High-Res Available

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MSU News Service
Tel: (406) 994-4571
BOZEMAN -- A deep-ocean explorer who broke "glass ceiling after glass ceiling" for women in science will give Montana State University's Friends of Stegner Lecture this year, said Brett Walker, head of MSU's Department of History and Philosophy.

Sylvia A. Earle, currently Explorer in Residence at the National Geographic Society, will speak from 6 to 7 p.m. Thursday, March 4, at The Ellen Theatre in Bozeman. The event is free and open to the public, but tickets are required because space is limited. Up to four tickets may be reserved by calling The Ellen Theatre at 585-5885 or going online to

Two other free public events will be held March 4 in conjunction with Earle's lecture. Earle will speak during a Women in Science Colloquium to be held from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. in the Byker Auditorium in MSU's Chemistry and Biochemistry Building. Earle will sign books from 5 to 5:50 p.m. at The Ellen Theatre.

Earle has been chief scientist for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, was Time magazine's first "Hero for the Planet" and was inducted in the National Women's Hall of Fame. She has led over 100 expeditions with more than 7,000 hours under water. The Library of Congress named her a Living Legend. She founded the Deep Search Foundation and chaired the advisory council for the Harte Research Institute and the Marine Science and Technology Foundation. She has written more than 175 publications. She has received more than 125 national and international awards, including the 2009 TED Prize.

Earle earned her bachelor's degree at Florida State University and her master's and doctorate degrees from Duke University. She has 18 honorary degrees. Earle's research focuses on the ecology and conservation of marine ecosystems and technology for accessing the deep sea.

Friends of Stegner lectures are given in honor of Wallace Stegner, a novelist, historian and conservationist who was often called the "dean of Western writers." Deceased in 1993, he won the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award. MSU established the Wallace Stegner Chair in Western Studies in 1997 to honor more than half a century of the wisdom and commitment that Stegner contributed to Western culture and society. Last year's Friends of Stegner Lecture was given by Peter Matthiessen, two-time winner of a National Book Award

Sponsors of the Friends of Stegner Lecture are MSU's Department of History and Philosophy, Montana INBRE and the Wallace Stegner Western Studies Chair.

Evelyn Boswell, (406) 994-5135 or