Dr. Martin B. Farley is the recipient of the 2019 AASP The Palynological Society’s Distinguished Service Award.
The award is presented for his 37 years of dedication and outstanding service and commitment to American Association of Stratigraphic Palynologists (AASP), as a board member, chair and member of the awards committee.
"I am honored that the Society has seen fit to select me for the Distinguished Service Award,” Farley said. “I would like to thank the members of the board, awards committee, and the society members who put the effort into the nomination. My work with the Society has expanded my knowledge beyond my own personal work in palynology.”
Farley earned a bachelor’s degree in Geosciences from the Pennsylvania State University, a master’s degree in Geology at Indiana University, his PhD in Geology with a minor in Botany, and was a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Paleobiology at the Smithsonian Institution.
Following a stint in industry, he returned to academia, climbing the ranks to full professor in 2013, and assuming the chairmanship of the Department of Geology and Geography at UNCP, a position which he has held since 2005.
He has been an advocate for micropaleontology, not just in the petroleum industry but also in the classroom, exemplified by his numerous presentations incorporating palynological data into both major-level geology and general education courses. Most recently, this has been through his melissopalynology work on bees with UNCP students, as well as students from the nearby Tar Heel Middle School and West Bladen High School, leading to presentations on melissopalynology at the N.C. Academy of Sciences meetings in 2017. He has been involved in K-12 STEM experiences for a long time, and through continued work with the campus garden and apiary, he has extended this into palynology and microscopy modules for the UNCP Kids in the Garden summer camp program.