Arizona Geological Society

M. Lee Allison Scholarship

Lee Allison began his career in the oil industry but soon transitioned to a career in public service. Before his life was tragically cut short in August 2016, Lee served with distinction as State Geologist in Utah, Kansas, and Arizona, successively. A dynamic and visionary leader and a gifted mentor, Lee combined innovative scholarship and consummate people skills with enthusiasm and optimism to drive his passion for making geologic information available to the public and for rendering it understandable. He was an articulate spokesman on scientific issues of societal importance and was dedicated to communicating their significance and impact in ways that resonated locally, regionally, nationally, and internationally. As a measure of his far-reaching public service efforts, Lee was honored by the American Association of Petroleum Geologists, the Association of Women Geologists, and the American Institute of Petroleum Geologists.

In recognition of his many contributions, the Arizona Geological Society Geosciences Scholarship was renamed in Lee’s honor following his death. Fittingly, the M. Lee Allison Scholarship is awarded to students who demonstrate exceptional achievement in pursuit of degrees in the earth sciences and who show balanced records exhibiting academic excellence, a passion for research, outstanding professional and general community involvement, and leadership in all of these areas.


For more details about this scholarship visit our Student Outreach Page.



Lauren J. Reeher

2021 M. Lee Allison Scholarship


Lauren Reeher received her BS in Geology from the University of Pittsburgh in August of 2015. She received her MS in Geology from the University of Texas at San Antonio in May of 2017. Her thesis at UTSA focused on sequence stratigraphy and reservoir characterization of the V17 interval of the Vicksburg formation in South Texas. She is currently a geoscience PhD candidate at the University of Arizona with research interests in structural geology, regional tectonics, and geomechanics.

Throughout her PhD studies, Lauren has been recognized as a Galileo Circle Scholar for her commitment to academic excellence. She has also been awarded the best talk in Structure/Tectonics at the University of Arizona Geosciences Symposium. She has received various research grants including the NSF/GSA Graduate Research Grant, the AAPG Grant-in-Aid award, and the University of Arizona Graduate Professional Student Council Research Grant. Aside from research, Lauren held a summer graduate research internship with Aramco Americas in Houston, TX. She has also worked as an invited Geological Field Instructor for East Carolina University’s Field Camp in Northern New Mexico and Southern Colorado. During her time in Tucson, she has volunteered as a Southern Arizona Research Science and Engineering Foundation (SARSEF) mentor to high school students participating in an international science competition. She has also served as the geoscience representative for the Graduate and Professional Student Council and is a member of AAPG, GSA, and AGU where she frequently presents research at annual meetings.

Lauren’s research at the University of Arizona has focused on applying a multidisciplinary, multi-method, and multi-scale approach to modern questions in the field of structural geology. Her projects range from detailed fracture analysis and the evolution of paleostress in the Paradox Basin, to applying modeling techniques at a regional tectonic scale to better understand the regional state of stress during tectonic deformation across the Colorado Plateau. She has also had the opportunity to work on the structural evolution of the Rincon-Catalina metamorphic core complex, as well as the development of many Laramide uplifts on the Colorado Plateau and Wyoming. Overall, her research has involved integrating various structural techniques with a focus on understanding the evolution of paleostress throughout geologic time.


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