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  Thanks, Andre
  BQR ~ fall 1998

ndre Potochnik stepped down as president of gcrg on September 1, off to pursue new dreams and continue with some old ones. Andre's working on finishing his Ph.D. in geology at asu, no small task while you're also trying to be president of this group. He's got research on debris flows and geoarcheology going in Grand Canyon as well, working with Kate Thompson on figuring out the past of the place we love so well here in the present. And he sits on the Adaptive Management Work Group (amwg) as the representative speaking for the guides on how the dam should be run.

   Andre learned about geology as a dory boatman in the canyon. He started in the early '70s—a round-faced kid of 21 or so: cut-off jeans and old tennies, squinting into the sun, no hat. This place changed his life, he said—he told me how much he was indebted to the canyon and the river, and he wanted to try and give something back. He went back to school to learn more and more and more about this love. His research in school has always been about the canyon, even if it doesn't seem so initially. Get him to tell you about his idea for how the river got over the Kaibab Plateau. You just might be telling your folks one day. It makes sense and it's a lot simpler than "headward erosion and stream capture".

   Andre brought the same intensity and concentration to his work at gcrg as he did to his studies. He has been tirelessly working on the things that go on behind the scenes: testifying in Washington on behalf of the Grand Canyon Protection Act, helping define parameters for the Glen Canyon Dam EIS, sitting on the Adaptive Management Work Group, working on crmp issues. He's the reason we know a lot of what we know about the scientific issues facing the river. Andre's got the great ability to be able to speak to scientists and politicians and then turn right around and translate it for all of us who aren't as into the techno-speak. He hasn't always been at the forefront of the flashy issues, like drug testing or the alcohol policy (remember that one?), but his work, wisdom and diplomacy has been extremely valuable and greatly appreciated.

   Andre will continue on as the GCRG representative at the amwg meetings as our River Science Coordinator. Thanks for all your work, Andre—good luck on the Ph.D. We look forward to calling you "Doc."


big horn sheep