Dr. Francisca E. Oboh-Ikuenobe, professor and head of geology and geophysics at Missouri University of Science and Technology, has been named interim chair of the geosciences and geological and petroleum engineering department at Missouri S&T. The appointment takes effect Jan. 1, 2015.
Oboh-Ikuenobe succeeds Dr. Ralph E. Flori Jr., who had served as chair since 2010. Flori will step down as chair Dec. 31 to coordinate strategic planning initiatives within the College of Engineering and Computing. He will also assume greater responsibility leading Missouri S&T’s Project Lead The Way (PLTW) efforts. Flori has served as affiliate director of Missouri’s PLTW since 2005. A national search will be initiated to select a new department chair.
“I appreciate Dr. Oboh-Ikuenobe’s willingness to lead the department of geosciences and geological and petroleum engineering during this time of transition,” says Dr. Ian Ferguson, vice provost and dean of the College of Engineering and Computing at Missouri S&T. “Her leadership, mentorship and expertise in her field, combined with her institutional knowledge make her an ideal candidate for interim chair.”
Oboh-Ikuenobe joined the Missouri S&T faculty in 1991 as an assistant professor of geology and geophysics. She was named associate professor in 1997 and professor in 2005. In 2006, she was named program head of geology and geophysics. Her research focuses on sedimentology, paleontology and palynology – the study of organic-walled microfossils such as pollen and spores.
Oboh-Ikuenobe holds a Ph.D. in geology from the University of Cambridge in England as well as a bachelor of science degree in geology and a master of science degree in applied geology, both from the University of Ife in Nigeria.
Oboh-Ikuenobe, who was named Missouri S&T Woman of the Year in 2004, is a Fellow of the Geological Society of America, co-chair of the Geological Society of America’s Diversity in the Geosciences Committee, past president of AASP – The Palynological Society, a Fulbright Roster Scholar from 2010-2015, past director of the Association for Women Geoscientists Foundation and a member of UNESCO’s International Geoscience Programme (IGCP) Scientific Board (GlobalChange Group).