BSc (Bio), 1969
SFU OUTSTANDING ALUMNI AWARD RECIPIENT, 2011
Dr. Rolf Mathewes has had a distinguished academic career as a professor, mentor, teacher, and scientific researcher of international renown. He is widely considered to be one of the top paleoecologists in Canada and is respected around the world for his ground-breaking contributions to Quaternary science. His research reconstructs the history of climate events through time, answering fundamental questions in geology, biogeography and evolutionary biology. His work has become even more critical in recent years, as we strive to understand how eco-systems respond to changes in the environment, particularly human-induced changes. He is a pioneer in the field of forensic botany, using analysis of pollen and other plant parts to help the police investigate crime scenes and solve high-profile cases including murder. He has shared his scientific insights through public lectures and the media including CBC Radio and Television, BBC TV and National Geographic among others. His extensive publication record includes more than 110 peer-reviewed research papers which continue to be heavily referenced and cited. A dedicated and award-winning teacher, and former associate dean of science for 11 years, Rolf has mentored many graduate students who have gone on to achieve significant success in their careers. His contributions and commitment to the University and academic community have been impressive, influential and inspiring.