2012 Joseph T. Gregory Award Winner

Louis H. Taylor


After earning an M.A. from Northern Arizona University he spent three years on the faculty at Central Arizona College. When Lou began graduate school at the University of Arizona, he chose an elective class in vertebrate paleontology taught by Everett “Doc” Lindsay, and was invited to attend his first SVP meeting in Flagstaff. Lou became a Lindsay student and was welcomed into the informal and intellectually stimulating seminar group known as “The Red Fireballs.” His research focused on Torrejonian mammals of the San Juan Basin and he completed M.S. and Ph.D. degrees.


After graduate school Lou served as a paleontologist and geologist in the Texaco labs in Midland, Texas, and Denver, Colorado, providing support and training for novice as well as experienced oil geologists. Eventually he and two colleagues formed Standard Geological Services, Inc. He maintained a connection to the world of vertebrate paleontology through fieldwork with Louis Jacobs.

In 1989 he returned to active participation in SVP, serving as treasurer from 2001 to 2007, at which time he agreed to chair the Development Committee. He worked with Steven Cohen and Louis Jacobs to create WE ARE SVP, a video thatpromotes and explains the science of vertebrate paleontology. He also lobbied for the Paleontological Resources Preservation Act that became law in 2009 and helped establish the Mary Dawson Postdoctoral Grant program.

Lou serves as a Research Associate and instructor at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, where he participated in the excavation and analyses of the Porcupine Cave fauna, and currently teaches in the paleontology certification program. He co-edited a volume dedicated to Will Downs and another in honor of Charles Repenning.

An Honorary Life Member of the Western Interior Paleontological Society, Lou helped create a biennial symposium as well as a grant and scholarship program. He serves on the Board of Directors for The Friends of Dinosaur Ridge, an organization whose mission is to preserve dinosaur tracks and bones exposed near Denver.