Oregon State University

College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences



Alumni Fellow: Ellen Morris Bishop

Ellen Bishop

October 4, 2012

Ellen Morris Bishop was nominated by College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences as Alumni Fellow and will be honored by the OSU Alumni Association at several events over homecoming weekend, October 19–21, 2012.

Ellen Morris Bishop received her MS (1979) and PhD (1983) in geology at Oregon State University, and then conducted postgraduate study at Scripps Institute of Oceanography in San Diego. After establishing herself as a scientist and teacher, she moved into a career path that combined public education, classroom teaching, and journalism.

Ellen is an accomplished journalist, photographer, and videographer, as well as a graphic designer. In previous years she wrote a science column for The Oregonian and served as the science reporter for Vancouver, Washington's The Columbian. She has designed interpretive displays for museums, provided photographs for brochures and web sites, and developed video productions for OPB's Oregon Field Guide and Oregon Story. She has worked as a photojournalist for several papers throughout the Northwest, and her landscape photos have been used and displayed by conservation organizations, including the Sierra Club, Oregon Natural Resources Council, and the Nature Conservancy, as well as illustrating interpretive exhibits, including the High Desert Museum, Newberry Volcanic National Monument, and Condon Museum.

Ellen has written several books, including In Search of Ancient Oregon, which won an Oregon Book Award for non-fiction in 2004 and Field Guide to Pacific Northwest Geology, which has been accepted by OSU Press.

Ancient Oregon

She has pursued a diverse set of educational positions, ranging from traditional 4-year universities—Eastern Oregon University, Lewis and Clark College, Marylhurst University—to community colleges to experiential learning programs. For example, this year she has given talks, hikes, and workshops on a range of topics (such as Oregon volcanoes, geologic history of the Central Cascades, digital nature photography, and connecting the public with the science they fund) to groups of students, naturalists, photographers, scientists, and the public.

Ellen's public service has included many environmental councils and projects. For example, she helped establish and served on Grande Ronde Model Watershed Council; held terms on Bureau of Land Management Advisory Council, John Day River, and on Fishtrap Board of Directors. She has trained and worked with therapy dogs – for hospitals, hospice, care facilities, and prison – in Delta Society Animal Assisted Therapy program.

Ellen credits several OSU mentors with helping to shape her career: Robert Yates, whose work is a model of how research scientists should also provide publically accessible versions of their work; Robert Lawrence who generously included her in his work in the Karakorums of Northwest Pakistan; and William Taubeneck, who inspired her to explore geology in the field, to think on her own, and to remain active physically both to achieve better results in the field and think and act with clarity.


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