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Dr. Allen L. Clark, Ph.D. (1939-2021)


Posted By: Ken Wright (email)
Date: 7/16/2021 at 11:41:57

DR. ALLEN L. CLARK Kailua, Hawaii Dr. Allen Clark, Ph.D., 82, passed away on May, 29, 2021, in Whitefish, Mont. Allen's remarkable life began in Delware, Iowa, where he was born to Charles and Velda Clark on Sept. 29, 1938. He learned to travel early and often (a prominent theme later in his life) as his father was a bridge builder and Allen attended the school nearby the next bridge to be built. He attended high school in Manchester, Iowa, where he excelled in track and football. He attended Iowa State University, where he earned his B.S. in geology. He attended the University of Idaho, where he earned his M.S. and Ph.D., in geology. His early career was as an exploration geologist with Bear Creek Minig Co., after which he joined the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and worked in the Alaskan Branch in Menlo Park, Calif., where he became its chief. During this time, he also attended Stanford University, where he pursued post-graduate studies equivalent to another Ph.D. in mineral economics. He then moved to USGS' Headquarters in Reston, Va., where he became the chief of the office of resource assessment. He developed bilateral and multilateral international resource assessment projects in cooperation with other governments and international organizations. During this time, he periodically returned to his geological speciality, igneous petrology, as he was co-investigator of the Apollo 9-12 lunar samples for petrofabric and trace element composition. He left the USGS in 1981 to head to the International Institute for Resource Assessment in Vienna, Austria, for two years. He accepted a position in 1983 at the East-West Center (EWC) in Honolulu, Hawaii, where his mentor, Richard Sheldon, Ph.D., worked after retiring as chief geologist of the USGS. Allen initially joined the EWC's Resource Systems Institute, where he developed international programs to assess and study various aspects of managing international mineral resources. During this time, he was a forerunner in the field of social-cultural impacts from mining, social risk assessment, deep-ocean resources and rare earths. He also did significant research and work on disaster management and climate change and managed the Pacific Disaster Center on Maui for the EWC from 2001 to 2006. He later became the director of the EWC's Professional Development Program from 2017-2021. Allen was a prolific and gifted scientific writer, authoring and co-authoring over 300 professional publications, papers and books, the latest of which was a book published in 2019 entitled, "Nexus of Resilience of Public Policy in a Modern Risk Society" with Mika Shimizu, Ph.D., of Kyoto University and contained one of his favorite quotes, "The significant problems we have cannot be solved at the same level of thinking with which we created them" by Albert Einstein. Allen also focused on specifically on mentoring and promoting junior colleagues to enable them to reach their greatest potential. Allen was predeceased by his parents, Charles and Velda Clark; two sons, Ken Allen and Brett Harlan; brother, Jan Allen; niece, Valencia; and a great-niece, Sheena. Allen is survived by his wife, Jennifer of almost 40 years, who lives in their Kailua, Oahu, home with their three Salukis and two Abyssinians. He is also survived by a daugther from a previous marriage, Holly Clark-Gray (William), Leesburg, Va.; four grandchildren, Jason O'Gray (Mary), Manassas, Va., Christopher Gray, Honolulu, Hawaii, Lindsay Johnson (David) Chantilly, Va. and Daniel Gray (Valerie) Garner, North Carolina; four great-grandchildren, Declan, Finn, Logan and Morgan; his sister, Claudette Becker (Gary), Toddville, Iowa; brother, Kevin Clark (April), Delware, Iowa; sister-in-law, Joan Clark, Cedar Rapids; and nieces, nephews and cousins. Allen will also be missed by the East-West Center Ohana, god-daugther, Faye Lowe of Wellington, New Zelands, and numerous friends in Hawaii and all over the world. He leaves many favorite research topics and papers unfinished, his cabin near Glacier National Park in Montana is not completely outfitted, much loved stories untold to newer generations of family and colleagues, and many rare flowers, berries and wildlife unspotted. Godspeed, Allen, may you find peace and rest. A Celebration of Life and service will be held at 11 a.m. July 17, at Springs of Life Anamosa, 1001 E. Third St., Anamosa, with luncheon to follow. A memorial may be held at a future date in Honolulu. The family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the American Heart Association in his name.
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Published by The Gazette on Jul. 11, 2021.


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