I recently had the honor of attending the Pioneer Natural Resources gift recognition ceremony on UK’s campus. The Department of Earth & Environmental Sciences (EES), in partnership with UK alumnus and Pioneer’s Vice President of Technology Tom Spalding, accepted a $600,000 gift from the company. The gift, which is intended to be spread over the next three years, will fund the Pioneer Natural Resources Research Professorship in Stratigraphy, as well as a three-year recruiting fellowship. Ellen Kaiser a first-year student in EES is the first recipient of this award. Pioneer is a large independent oil and gas exploration company based in Dallas, with operations in Texas, Colorado, Alaska, and South Africa.