January 2021 Meeting

Monday, January 11, 2021
6:00 - 7:30 pm

Note: ETGS members will receive an email with info for logging into the meeting.


Late Neoproterozoic to early Cambrian biological and tectonic transitions in the Southern Appalachians (Chilhowee Gp)



Dr. Steve Hageman, Professor of Geology
Department of Geological and Environmental Sciences
Appalachian State University, Boone, NC


Clastic sediments of the Laurentian margin of eastern North America record the tectonic event of the breakup of the Panotian supercontinent to form the Iapetus Sea. Superimposed on the tectonic/environmental signal of these sediments is the macroevolutionary history of the diversification of multicellular organisms and their creation of new ecosystems. The earliest record of this transition is more clearly preserved in trace fossils than body fossils.

Recent discoveries of trace fossils in the Chilhowee Group include trace fossils not previous recorded from these rocks and suggest an alternative chronostratigraphic interpretation. A succession of trace and body fossils (E TN and SW VA) show a transition from those consistent with the Ediacaran in the mid-Unicoi Fm, those of the early Cambrian (Fortunian) in the upper Unicoi Fm and lower Hampton Fm, those of the Cambrian Agronomic Revolution is present in the middle Hampton Fm (unnamed Stage 2), and typical of the rest of the Paleozoic from the Erwin Fm (upper-lower Cambrian).

A multi-year effort to relocate and collect from Walcott's (lost) southern Appalachian trilobite localities has yielded new, well-preserved nevadiid trilobite specimens from the Murray Shale (mid-upper Chilhowee Gp.) in the region of Walcott's original locality. The site yields abundant well preserved hyolithids and other arthropod? specimens (Murray fauna). Fossils from this unit establish affinities of the Murray Sh (Erwin Fm) with the late-early Cambrian Sirius Passet Lagerstatte in Greenland.


In late 2019 Dr. Steve Hageman was recognized as a newly elected Fellow of the Geological Society of America (GSA) at the Phoenix, Arizona meeting.

"Steven J. Hageman merits GSA Fellowship based on: publication of his internationally regarded research on fossil bryozoans with important implications for evolution, paleoecology and sedimentology; dedicated teaching and mentoring of geology students with impacts beyond his institution; and service to the profession, particularly as editor of the Journal of Paleontology," said Patricia Kelle, past president of the Paleontological Society.

Society Fellowship is an honor bestowed on the best of the geological profession by election. GSA members are nominated by existing fellows in recognition of a sustained record of distinguished contributions to the geosciences and the Geological Society of America through such avenues as publications, applied research, teaching, administration of geological programs, contributing to the public awareness of geology and leadership of professional organizations.

"Steve has a talent in the classroom for opening up the world to Appalachian students, many who have not traveled far from home. He encouraged two of his undergraduate research students to pursue their Ph.D.'s internationally. Steve's scholarly activity includes serving as a patient mentor to undergraduate students. He has supervised 12 undergraduate senior theses. Additionally, he has spent countless hours leading students on field trips in the Appalachia region and to visit museum collections," said Dr. Ellen A. Cowan, GSA nominator and professor in the Department of Geological and Environmental Studies.

Hageman joined the Appalachian faculty in 1998, coming from a research associate position at the Field Museum of Natural History and a postdoctoral appointment at the University of Adelaide, South Australia. His research interests are in patterns and processes of evolution, particularly microevolution and speciation. His primary study groups are Cenozoic cheilostomate and Paleozoic stenolaemata bryozoans.

He also received the University College Transfer Student Champion Award in 2019, in addition to being a two-time award recipient of the Fulbright Scholarship in 2006 and 2018. In 2009, Hageman received the Board of Governors' Appalachian State University College Teaching Award.

Hageman earned his Ph.D. and M.S. from the University of Illinois and his B.S. from the University of Kansas.

Greetings, and welcome to the January 11, 2021 ETGS virtual meeting. We hope you, your family, and your colleagues are staying healthy and well as we endeavor to "flatten the curve".

As a courtesy please mute your cell phone or the microphone in your laptop/tablet to minimize background noise and feedback echos. We will also make an effort to mute all participants - at least until the presentation is finished. Please use the chat feature to type any comments or questions you may have. We recommend that you send questions for the speaker to "everyone" so all participants can see the question. In the interest of time, we may hold the Q&A at the end of the presentation.

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etgs@live.com to be listed on the attendance sheet. Let us know exactly how your name should appear on the list. We will add a note explaining the lack of signatures due to COVID-19-induced distancing and have an ETGS officer sign as usual.

Thank you for your patience and understanding as we try this online format. As always, we welcome and appreciate your feedback and suggestions for improvement



Page updated December 22, 2020