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November 7, 2017

KEGS Foundation Receives Transformative Gift from Len and Genice Collett

The KEGS Foundation announces, with great pride and deep appreciation, a transformative gift of $1,000,000 from the estate of Leonard (Len) and Genice Collett in support of its programs to advance geophysical education in Canada.

This exceptional donation was recently announced at a special luncheon in Toronto attended by many geophysical veterans and pioneers, as well as by Len's brother Wilmer and nieces Judy Burns and JoAnn Collett from the Ottawa area, who were pleased to meet many who had known or worked with Len.

Len Collett, born in 1922 to a hardscrabble farming family in SW Ontario, was a noted Canadian geophysicist who enjoyed a distinguished 37 year career with the Geological Survey of Canada in Ottawa. He was previously honoured by the J. Tuzo Wilson Medal in 1989 for his pioneering contributions to the early development of induced polarization, rock property studies and airborne electromagnetics, as well as actively fostering geophysical R&D in Canada under the federal IRAP program, and subsequently by the GSC Pioneers Scholarship established by the Foundation in 2007. Len, who graduated from McMaster University with a BSc, followed by a MA degree in geophysics at the University of Toronto in 1948, was an ardent supporter of geophysical education, and made significant donations to the Foundation in his later years, after he had retired to his farm near Hopetown. His recently deceased wife and life partner of many decades, Genice (Mauney), taught for many years in Ottawa schools and shared Len's vision of advancing geophysical education and research.

The KEGS Foundation, established in 1999 by a group of senior mining geophysicists active in KEGS*, is principally focused on providing scholarships for students in geophysics at Canadian universities. In the latest round of awards announced in July, twenty-four scholarships were awarded to twelve undergraduate and twelve graduate students at thirteen universities for the 2017-18 academic year, bringing the total awards over the past seventeen years to 250, achieved through the strong and sustained support by the geophysical and exploration community across Canada.

The KEGS Foundation expects to use this transformative donation from Len and Genice Collett to establish a number of new fellowships and scholarships bearing their names, which will serve as an enduring legacy of their extraordinary philanthropy, with details to be announced over the next few months.

On behalf of the KEGS Foundation,

Jerry Roth, Chair
Stephen Reford, Vice Chair

*KEGS is a well-established acronym for the Canadian Exploration Geophysics Society, the principal mining geophysics professional society, established in 1953 and based in Toronto


Genice (1927 - 2017) & Len Collett (1922 - 2011)

(circa 1975)

"Len was a strong advocate of scholarships for students of geosciences."
(from Len's obituary)




Brother Wil Collett and nieces Judy Burns and JoAnn Collett of Ottawa in front of poster of Genice and Len Collett, at the Geophysical Veterans' Luncheon on Oct 23, 2017


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