[ESIP-all] Peter Fox: In Remembrance and with Unending Gratitude

Mcgibbney, Lewis J (172B) lewis.j.mcgibbney at jpl.nasa.gov
Mon Mar 29 14:27:24 EDT 2021

This is such a bloody shame. Peter aka Taswegian was a true gentleman. He was one of several very kind members of this community who provided a reference for my Green Card application and I am eternally grateful to him for that.
I will remember Peter for his warm persona, great sense of humor and willingness to strive for high standards in his work. It was a pleasure to have known Peter, to have shared a few whiskies with him and to have had the opportunity to observe, listen and learn from the man. I am truly saddened by this news. 
RIP Peter.

Sent from JPL business cell. Apologies for brevity or spelling errors. 

> On Mar 29, 2021, at 11:35, esip-all-request at lists.esipfed.org wrote:
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> Today's Topics:
>   1. Peter Fox: In Remembrance and with Unending Gratitude
>      (Susan Shingledecker)
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> Message: 1
> Date: Mon, 29 Mar 2021 12:22:22 -0400
> From: Susan Shingledecker <susanshingledecker at esipfed.org>
> To: esip-all at lists.esipfed.org
> Subject: [ESIP-all] Peter Fox: In Remembrance and with Unending
>    Gratitude
> Message-ID:
>    <CAO=NdPDyoad=EiirAocRMJXLAFVD0Aqm_Rv=gBaL7o1xCBr-Kg at mail.gmail.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="utf-8"
> We are resending this note shared with the ESIP Monday Update list to our
> listserv to ensure all who need to see this news are reached. It is with an
> incredibly heavy heart that we share the news of Peter Fox?s passing over
> the weekend. We know this comes as a tremendous shock to all who knew
> Peter. We are honored to share this joint tribute below written by so many
> who knew Peter so well. In the days, weeks and months ahead, we will look
> for appropriate ways to honor his memory and his legacy. Peter contributed
> so much to the ESIP community and we are so grateful for his life and
> leadership. We encourage you to share your memories and reflections on
> this memory
> board
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=33d6b8dfd1&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9Gpu8PGg$ >
> and
> to view this photo gallery
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=54dd52ac50&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9KxQrju_$ >
> of
> Peter in our community.
> Ken Kasey, ESIP President
> Denise Hills, ESIP Vice President
> Susan Shingledecker, ESIP Executive Director
> *Remembering Dr. Peter Fox - A titan in the Earth science informatics
> community*
> With heavy hearts, we relay the shocking, sad news shared by Rensselaer
> Polytechnic Institute (RPI)
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=9f3a5a7881&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9Kihu6Uq$ >
> on
> Sunday: Dr. Peter Fox died on March 27, 2021.
> The Earth and space science informatics community lost a titan. We want to
> express our condolences to his partner, Erica Veil, his family, and his
> colleagues at RPI Tetherless World Constellation (TWC)
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=6d1c5b06d9&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9K3Sj_07$ >
> including
> his current and past research group members and all of his collaborators.
> Dr. Fox touched many lives. In his passing, we all have lost a friend,
> mentor, and great leader. We know this short tribute covers just a fraction
> of Peter?s impact. We have set up a Kudoboard memorial
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=e7ca48fb13&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9Di6jBWA$ >
> to
> capture all of our memories from around the world and develop a deeper
> understanding of the legacy that Peter leaves.
> Dr. Fox was known for convening the community. This message is shared by
> the AGU Earth and Space Science Informatics (AGU ESSI) section
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=f3a63b6dcb&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9BcAv3hr$ >,
> the EGU Earth and Space Science Informatics division (EGU ESSI)
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=622e9b2f41&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9LQRxzQ6$ >,
> the Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP)
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=30a5a300a0&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9DQVeIcG$ >,
> and the Australian Earth and Environmental Science Information Partners
> (E2SIP)
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=0bc197a176&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9PljkNMc$ >,
> the Geological Society of America Geoinformatics and Data Science division
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=21d2a0b1f9&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9AysNUsI$ >,
> the Research Data Alliance (RDA)
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=17c6a43891&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9DFEBNUX$ >,
> and CODATA
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=cd8e90a5be&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9N1HSpnB$ >,
> all organizations that Peter founded or championed during his incredible
> career.  In 2012, when he received the Martha Maiden Lifetime achievement
> award from ESIP, which honored his demonstrated leadership, dedication, and
> collaborative spirit in advancing the field of Earth Science information
> Peter said, ?Your opinion of me is none of my business ? rather I really
> care  about what we?ve done and how we?ve done it as that is the most
> important thing.?
> As we grapple with the news of the loss of our dear friend, the
> international data science community comes together to collectively
> remember him. Dr. Fox made significant contributions to the Earth and space
> science informatics community. From 1991 to 2008, Fox was at the High
> Altitude Observatory (HAO) of NCAR in Boulder, Colorado, as Scientist until
> 1995, and Chief Computational Scientist from 1995 to 2008. As a Tetherless
> World Constellation senior chair and professor of Earth and Environmental
> Science, Computer Science and Cognitive Science and director of the
> Information Technology and Web Science Program at RPI, Peter made
> significant contributions to both domain science and informatics as he and
> his group supported distributed scientific repositories and addressed ?the
> full life-cycle of data and information within specific science and
> engineering disciplines as well as among disciplines (Source:Wikipedia
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=440bde0a09&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9HuyTCBu$ >
> ).?
> Helen Glaves, President of EGU said, ?There are no words and so many words
> all at once. We are deeply saddened and shocked by the passing of Dr. Peter
> Fox. He was a pillar of the informatics community, and pivotal in
> establishing the ESSI Division of EGU. In 2012 this contribution was
> recognised by his peers when Peter received the Ian McHarg Medal for his
> role in establishing informatics as a genuine discipline within the Earth
> Sciences. We are grateful for the legacy that Peter Fox leaves and starting
> with this collaborative remembrance, we are carrying his generous,
> collaborative spirit forward.?
> In the United States, Dr. Fox partnered with NASA, NOAA, USGS, and the US
> Global Change Research Program. Dr. Rahul Ramachandran, Project Manager and
> Senior Scientist, NASA said "Peter's contributions to the NASA Earth
> Science Data community have been immense. His research in Informatics and
> Data Science has had a lasting impact in defining the direction of science
> data and information system evolution. But more importantly, he was
> genuinely selfless in sharing his knowledge and touched so many lives. He
> taught so many of us to be good researchers, gracious colleagues,
> supportive mentors, and above all, to be generous human beings."
> Dr. Fox began participating in ESIP in 2005 and in 2007, he founded ESIP?s
> Semantic Web cluster, now the Semantic Technology Committee, to bring
> experts from around the world together around Earth science semantic
> technology.  Peter was instrumental in the formation of AGU ESSI and EGU
> ESSI. Peter served as ESIP?s president from 2014-2016, during a pivotal
> period of transition. He continued his involvement recently, when he
> supported the US-Australian discussions on forming the Earth and
> Environmental Science Information Partners, E2SIP. Peter felt strongly that
> his fellow Australians really needed to combine with equivalent efforts in
> ESIP and ASAP to maximise impact from both continents and avoid reinventing
> the wheel separately from the rest of the world.
> Dr. Fox was a treasured member of the first Research Data Alliance (RDA)
> Technical Advisory Board (TAB)
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=d734ac7179&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9IRtRLMX$ >
> from
> 2013 to 2016 and was instrumental in setting up and driving the RDA in its
> early years. Even when he finished his term on TAB, Dr. Fox continued to be
> involved in RDA groups and the community. In his keynote speech entitled
> "Can it get any more important than this?", during the Opening Plenary
> session of the RDA Launch, 18 March 2013 in Goteborg, Sweden, Dr. Fox had
> many golden nuggets to impart to the audience, including "Work as if you
> have already succeeded. Data needs to be a first class citizen, an object
> of conversation." He argued for a focus on cultural activity of standards
> adoption as well as technical activity of standards creation. He
> characterised the Research Data Alliance as a socio-technical system.
> "These have best practices which we [RDA] should be following. It is not
> only about the data, it is about people, and the alliance." No truer words
> were ever spoken about RDA.
> Dr. Fox?s intellectual influence has been felt in a number of ways in
> CODATA Task Groups and activities.  The current flagship initiative ?Making
> Data Work for Cross-Domain Grand Challenges?
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=a8878a418b&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9JuWWgfC$ >
> has
> roots in many places, including discussions with Dr. Fox on how to better
> address issues of interoperability, how to draw lessons from informatics
> work in many domains (including the Earth sciences), and how to engage more
> effectively with some of the International Scientific Unions that make up
> the ISC (International Science Council) community.  Indeed, within the
> International Union of Geophysics and Geodesy, Dr. Fox had been
> instrumental in establishing the Commission for Data and Information and
> was its first Chair.  Dr. Fox served on two successive strategic planning
> exercises for ICSU, the Strategic Committee on Information and Data (2018)
> and the Strategic Coordinating Committee on Information and Data (2011).
> The first of these led directly to the creation of the World Data System as
> an international programme, building on the previous World Data Centres and
> the Federation of Astronomical and Geophysical Data analysis Services.
> Dr. Fox was a pioneer leading the Earth science community in acknowledging
> the scientific contributions of informatics. This leadership was recognized
> during 2018 when Peter became AGU ESSI?s first AGU Fellow. He was also
> recognized during 2018 by AAAS as an elected Fellow in recognition of his
> extraordinary achievements in advancing science.
> Recently, Peter was the Editor in Chief of Earth and Space Science
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=b93771d288&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9G0WqZa7$ >.
> He felt that this journal had a pivotal role to play in the community.  The
> journal scope spans all of the Earth, planetary and space sciences, and the
> journal notably welcomes papers presenting key data sets, observations,
> methods, instruments, sensors, and algorithms showing their value and
> application. By giving a place for important informatics and technical
> contributions, he furthered the value of scientific datasets and
> observations. The editors of the journal were personally selected to ensure
> ?usefulness of publications over traditional metrics.?  He valued
> everyone?s contribution. Just last week he authored a thank you
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=0585cb0078&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9DA4o1y5$ >
> from
> all of the journal editors to all the reviewers for 2020. AGU Executive
> Vice President Brooks Hanson noted that also, ?Peter freely and eagerly
> shared his advice, knowledge, inspiration, and leadership broadly with all
> the other AGU editors and staff, and beyond.  He wanted the journal to make
> a difference in science, and to move us forward faster. In one of our last
> conversations, he said how much he loved being an editor for these reasons.?
> An outstanding mentor, Dr. Fox encouraged his students to take leadership
> roles - all three of the current student representatives to the GSA
> Geoinformatics and Data Science Division (GIDS) Board are Peter's students.
> Peter did not limit his guidance to students. Denise Hills (ESIP Vice
> President, AGU ESSI Immediate Past President, GSA GIDS Past Chair)
> expressed her experience with his mentorship as, ?Peter was kind, generous,
> and supportive yet didn?t take any nonsense from anyone about anything.
> This includes any nonsense you may have believed about yourself. He has
> believed in me when I did not, and more amazing to me - convinced me to
> believe in myself. My professional and personal life would look very
> different, and very much less enriched, without his influence.?
> Peter?s mentorship extended far and wide, Dr. Chris Mattman, NASA JPL
> echoed the importance of Peter?s mentorship saying, ?I first came to know
> Peter Fox during a time in which he was running four or five concurrent
> large National Science Foundation projects. For any one person to run two
> concurrently is a feat but that was Peter. I was introduced to him by my
> mentor Rob Raskin and came to be immediately impressed with Peter?s
> humility, intelligence and quick wit. We collaborated for over a decade and
> I consider him a mentor and a dear friend. I will miss him greatly, as will
> the world.?
> Former ESIP Executive Director from 2010-2014, Carol Meyer summed it up
> well when she said, ?Peter Fox was a brilliant man, one who had clarity
> about everything that had his attention. Peter was exceptional in every
> sense of the word - intelligent, compassionate, talented, thoughtful,
> generous, stylish and funny. The world is a better place because of his
> contributions.?
> Please share your Peter Fox stories through the Kudoboard
> <https://urldefense.us/v3/__https://esipfed.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=ca50850794ee72b04765ac93c&id=336b3ebbdf&e=bca9c44b81__;!!PvBDto6Hs4WbVuu7!aQHPJ233thpps_EU1MPAe9ZLfFbw0PiUnCVu-li6VPs3NVOOTTrlr1A34a2jdfSCEiKM9ANnDA_n$ >.
> More will be planned to remember Peter at upcoming meetings and
> conferences.
> *Acknowledgement and Contacts for groups*: This post was collaboratively
> written by Erin Robinson (Metadata Game Changers, Past ESIP Executive
> Director), Ken Casey (NOAA, ESIP President), Jeff de La Beaujardi?re (NCAR,
> AGU ESSI President), Helen Glaves (EGU President), Hilary Hanahoe (RDA
> Secretary General), Brooks Hanson (AGU Exec. VP of Science), Denise Hills
> (ESIP Vice President), Simon Hodson (CODATA Executive Director), Danie
> Kinkade (WHOI/BCO-DMO, AGU ESSI President-Elect), Jens Klump (CSIRO, EGU
> ESSI Chair), Carol Meyer (US Chess Federation, Past ESIP Executive
> Director), Rahul Ramachandran (NASA IMPACT), Kenneth Rubin (GSA GIDS
> President), Susan Shingledecker (ESIP Executive Director), Shelley Stall
> (AGU Sr. Director, Data Leadership) and many others.
> We are grateful for the truly global collaboration across the following
> organizations:
>   - The American Geophysical Union (AGU)
>   - AGU Earth and Space Science Informatics Section (ESSI)
>   - CODATA
>   - The Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP)
>   - The European Geosciences Union (EGU)
>   - EGU Earth and Space Science Informatics Division (ESSI)
>   - The Earth and Environmental Science Information Partners (E2SIP)
>   - Geological Society of America Geoinformatics and Data Science Division
>   (GIDS)
>   - The Research Data Alliance (RDA)
> The text is freely available for anyone or organization in the Earth
> science informatics community to use as they remember Dr. Peter Fox.
> -- 
> *Susan Shingledecker*
> Executive Director
> Earth Science Information Partners - ESIP
> 800.881.9418 | susanshingledecker at esipfed.org
> esipfed.org
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