Library Digitization Homepage
OAS Homepage
Volume 72—1992

{Page 71}


Paul Buck

Picture of Paul Buck

Paul Buck served as the Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the Oklahoma Academy 1988-90. He was the driving force for the establishment of the Academy's Endowment Fund. The Executive SecretaryTreasurer is the one paid staff member of this organization and as such is responsible for the interactions with each member and the Academy's various publics – he is like the point man, highly visible and exposed. This position requires unselfish service to be successful. For example, in Paul's case when the Academy's bank account was low, he either delayed or refrained from writing the check for his services. Paul was the good glue that held us together and was a catalyst for improving operations. His services in this difficult job were much appreciated, but not really evident to the membership since he worked in the background to make everything go smoothly. His prior service to the Academy includes vice-chairman 1966 and chairman 1967 of Section A; elected Secretary-Treasurer, 1969; President-elect, 1970; and President, 1971.

Paul was born 9 September 1927 in Highland Park, Michigan as Paul, Jr., the son of Paul and Ruth Virginia Buck. He was a flight engineer on multiengine aircraft and a turret gunner in the Navy (1945-48) and, when recalled for the Korean war, participated in aircraft flight tests for the Navy (1950-52). He was a fireman in Tulsa between tours in the Navy. Upon return from the Navy he served 6 years as a police officer in Tulsa. The University of Tulsa awarded him a B.S. and a M.S. in botany (zoology minors) in 1958 and 1959, respectively. His Ph.D. in botany is from the University of Oklahoma and his specialties are terrestrial plant ecology and vascular plant systematics. Research on such sneezy subjects as "Hay Fever Plants in Oklahoma" and "Weather Patterns and Ragweed Production in Tulsa" has resulted in 11 publications in peer-reviewed journals. His book "Distribution and Identification of Woody Plants of Oklahoma in the Winter Condition" was originally published by the OAS in 1983 and in a second edition in 1992. Identification of plants without leaves is a sometimes important, and usually difficult, task.

Paul joined the faculty of the University of Tulsa in 1969 and retired in 1986. He still teaches botany at Tulsa Junior College, the University of Tulsa, the University Center in Tulsa, and the Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory – but not all at the same time; his teaching location depends on the time of the year.

Undergraduate courses that he has taught include: general biology, natural history, environmental biology, genetics and man, plant kingdom, plant anatomy, morphology of the vascular plants, plant physi-

{Page 72}

Dr. Paul Buck Receiving award

ology, plant taxonomy, agrostology, microtechnique, and bioecology. The graduate courses taught include: organismic biology, environmental biology, plant taxonomy, advanced placement biology for high school science teachers, Rocky Mountain flora, and Rocky Mountain natural history.

He and Lou Ann Clark married July 16, 1950 and have two children: Paul III (director of the Montana Eye Bank) and Dana Lou (Baker) (a business executive in Chicago). There are two grandchildren. His professional organizations include: American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Association of University Professors, Ecological Society of America, Great Plains Historical Society, International Association for Aerobiology, Oklahoma Academy of Science, Oklahoma Native Plant Society, Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory, Society of Sigma Xi, and Southwestern Association of Naturalists.

Paul has consulted for the botany section of the environmental impact study for the Black Fox Nuclear Power Plant, with various companies concerning coal mining permits, and for Independent Ecological Consultants (Verdigris River).

We appreciate Paul's service to the Academy. This award recognizes that service, but does not repay the debt that the Academy has for above-and-beyond service, or for the periods that he went unpaid or underpaid for the good of our bank accounts.