ICDD Awards - McMurdie Award 2016


This award is given to recognize distinguished work, which improves the Powder Diffraction File™ in its purpose of identifying and characterizing materials.

It is with great sadness that we announce that one of our very dedicated ICDD members, Ann Sabina of the Geological Survey of Canada, passed away on 29 September 2015 after a brief illness. Ann was 85 years old. Ann was a very active member of the International Centre for Diffraction Data (ICDD) and is known in our community for her significant contributions to the Powder Diffraction File™, particularly the Minerals Subfile. In fact, she spent nearly five decades working as a member of the Minerals Task Group, dedicated to improving the quality and uniqueness of the Minerals Subfile through her volunteer efforts. In acknowledgement of her contributions, Ann was recently selected to receive the 2016 McMurdie Award; this award recognizes distinguished work which improves the Powder Diffraction File™ in its purpose of identifying and characterizing materials. Friend and colleague, Andy Roberts (Emeritus - Geological Survey of Canada), had the honor of informing Ann in June about the award. Ann was quite surprised and was looking forward to attending the ICDD Meeting of Members in March to accept it. The award will be given posthumously at the 17 March 2016 meeting.

Ann will be remembered for her dedication to mineralogy and gemmology. In 1952, Ann began working at the Geological Survey of Canada at the Victoria Memorial Museum (now the Canadian Museum of Nature), in the field of X-ray diffraction. She was the author of the very popular series "Rocks and Minerals for the Collector"; co-founder of the Canadian Gemmological Association; and a long-serving Treasurer for the Mineralogical Association of Canada. Ann recently completed the revised version of "Rocks and Minerals for the Collector: Bay of Fundy, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, and South Shore, Nova Scotia", which is scheduled to be released in November. In addition, an Open File on "Information for Collectors", which replaces the Natural Resources Canada website public information will be released about the same time. Ann continued to work daily since her retirement in the late nineties up until early August. She was the discoverer of the mineral, Weloganite (Sr3Na2Zr(CO3)6 ·3H2O), and was the first to collect the mineral Sabinaite (Na4Zr2TiO4(CO3)4), named in her honor by John Jambor.

Ann was passionate about her work with minerals and generously shared that passion over the years within the minerals community and beyond. Her contributions to mineralogy and gemmology, as well as to ICDD, are legendary. We will miss our good friend and colleague.


See the continually growing list of McMurdie Award Winners