Terry Plank

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Terry Ann Plank
Plank 2012 hi-res-download 2.jpg
Matt Carr; John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
Born (1963-10-18) October 18, 1963 (age 51)
Wilmington, Delaware
Residence Nyack, New York
Nationality USA
Fields Geochemistry
Institutions Columbia University / Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory
Alma mater Dartmouth College, Columbia University/Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory
Notable awards MacArthur Fellow

Terry Ann Plank is an American geochemist, volcanologist and professor of earth science at Columbia College, Columbia University, and the Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory. She is a 2012 MacArthur Fellow.[1]


Plank was born in Wilmington, Delaware.[2] As a child, she grew up in a schist quarry and was the youngest member of the Delaware Mineralogical Society in third grade.[2][3] She graduated from Tatnall High School in 1981 and then graduated summa cum laude in Earth Sciences from Dartmouth College in 1985 with her thesis Magmatic Garnets from the Cardigan Pluton, NH. She received her Ph.D. in Geosciences with distinction in 1993 from Columbia University, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory with her thesis Mantle Melting and Crustal Recycling at Subduction Zones. She was a post-doctoral fellow at Cornell University from 1993 to 1995. She had various faculty positions at the University of Kansas and Boston University. In 2008, she moved to Columbia University.[4][5]

Research focus[edit]

She has spent her career researching magma and volcanoes. One specific area of her research is how the chemical composition of magma and crystals that form during eruption can provide information about the amount of water present during the eruption and explain how explosive it was. She has done field work around the ring of fire, Philippines, Nicaragua, Iceland, and across the southwest United States as well as the Aleutian Islands.[5][6]


Plank was presented with the John Ebers Geology Award while at Dartmouth College. In 1998, Plank received the Houtermans Medal from the European Association for Geochemistry as well as the Donath Medal from the Geological Society of America.[4] In 2012, Plank was awarded the MacArthur Genius Grant.[1]


  1. ^ a b "2012 MacArthur Foundation 'Genius Grant' Winners". 1 October 2012. AP. Retrieved 1 October 2012. 
  2. ^ a b Rouen, Ethan. "5 Minutes with … Terry Plank". January/February 2011. Columbia College Today. Retrieved 3 October 2012. 
  3. ^ "Volcano Expert Wins MacArthur 'Genius Grant'". 2 October 2012. The Earth Institute, Columbia University. Retrieved 6 October 2012. 
  4. ^ a b Plank, Terry Ann. "CV: Terry Ann Plank". Retrieved 3 October 2012. 
  5. ^ a b Plank, Terry. "Terry Plank Home Page". June 2012. Retrieved 3 October 2012. 
  6. ^ "MacArthur Foundation: Terry Plank". 2 October 2012. MacArthur Foundation. Retrieved 6 October 2012. 

External links[edit]