History of CAP

The original concept of the Canadian Association of Palynologists (CAP) was proposed in Calgary at the 1974 Geological Survey of Canada’s annual meeting of palynologists. The proposal was initiated by Wayne W. Brideaux. No further action was taken on this proposal until 1978, again at a meeting of the GSC palynologists in Calgary when Sedley Barss, Jonathan Bujak and Graham Williams agreed to circulate a questionnaire to Canadian palynologists seeking their support of such a nationalistic organization. Of 100 questionnaires, 51 were returned, 44 in favour of the formation of a Canadian Association of Palynologists. In April 1978 Graham Williams presented details of CAP to the Executive of the American Association of Stratigraphic Palynologists who extended their support to the new group.

The first Executive was elected and officially met for the first time on January 8 1979, at the Atlantic Geoscience Centre, Bedford Institute of Oceanography, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. The Executive included:

  • D. C. McGregor, President
  • D. M. Jarzen, President-elect
  • P. J. H. Richard, Secretary-Treasurer
  • J. P. Bujak, Newsletter Editor
  • M. S. Barss, Steering Committee
  • G. L. Williams, Steering Committee

Table 1 (below) lists the CAP Executive from 1979 to the present. The two-year term of office began in 1987.

CAP was affiliated with the International Commission for Palynology [ICP] (later the International Federation of Palynological Societies [IFPS]) in January 1979, through an invitation of the then President, Alfred Traverse. In 1979 John Utting was voted the CAP Councillor to the ICP. John held this position from 1979 to 1988. David Jarzen was elected to hold the position of Councillor from 1988 to 1992, and re-elected for 1992 to 1996. Table 2 (below) lists the CAP Councillors to IFPS.

CAP has produced a newsletter, with two issues per year, since 1978 even before the election of its first Executive. Newsletter editors have played an important role in the success of CAP, inasmuch as regular annual meetings are not always possible. The Newsletter serves as the vital link in our communication. Sincere appreciation is certainly due for the efforts of our Newsletter editors: Jonathan Bujak (1978-1981); Bert van Helden (1982-1985); Judith Lentin (1986-1988); Alwynne Beaudoin (1989-1998); and Mary Vetter (1999-2005). The current editor is Terri Lacourse. Since 2007, the Newsletter has been produced in digital format, as PDFs.

In January 1987, through the yeoman service of the then Secretary-Treasurer, Rob Fensome, CAP was officially incorporated as a non-profit organization (see CAP Newsletter 10, No. 1, for details). Although CAP is basically a newsletter organization, its incorporation established a set of By-laws from which to guide the organization.

Since its formation in 1979, CAP has hosted and contributed to several important international meetings within Canada. These include:

  • The 6th IPC (International Palynological Congress of the International Federation of Palynological Societies) at Calgary, Alberta (26 August – 01 September 1984). This event was hosted by the Calgary group of CAP members, led by co-organizers Len Hills and Jan Jansonius, who initiated and won the bid for the congress.
  • The 20th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Stratigraphic Palynologists (AASP) in Halifax, Nova Scotia (7-9 October 1987).
  • The 23rd Annual Meeting of the AASP in Banff, Alberta (10-13 October 1990). The organizing committee comprised Dave McIntyre, Tom Demchuk, Jan Ford and Bert van Helden.
  • The 28th Annual Meeting of AASP in Ottawa, Ontario (10-14 October 1995). The organizing team was led by David and Susan Jarzen.
  • The 36th Annual Meeting of AASP, Joint Meeting AASP-CAP-NAMS, at Brock University in St Catharines, Ontario, October 2003. The organizing team was led by Francine McCarthy.
  • Joint meeting of CAP, AASP-The Palynological Society, and GAC-Palaeontology Division, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, September-October 2010. This was AASP’s 43rd Annual Meeting. The organizing team was led by Rob Fensome.

CAP has also sponsored special sessions at conferences within Canada and overseas through the years. Among these are:

The CAP-sponsored sessions in 2000 and 2002 resulted in the publication of papers in edited volumes, further promoting and highlighting the Association.

Table 1: Canadian Association of Palynologists Executive 1979 to 2018
Term President President-Elect Secretary-Treasurer Newsletter Editor Website Editor
2020-2021 Anna Pieńkowski Florin Pendea Francine McCarthy Vacant Manuel Bringué
2018-2019 Audrey Limoges Anna Pieńkowski Jessie Holst Vincent Florin Pendea Manuel Bringué
2017 Vera Pospelova Audrey Limoges Jessie Holst Vincent Florin Pendea Manuel Bringué
2016 Vera Pospelova and Francine McCarthy (shared term) Vera Pospelova Mary Vetter Florin Pendea Alwynne B. Beaudoin
2015 Francine McCarthy Vera Pospelova Mary Vetter Florin Pendea Alwynne B. Beaudoin
2014 Francine McCarthy N/A Mary Vetter Florin Pendea Alwynne B. Beaudoin
2012-2013 Terri Lacourse Francine McCarthy Mary Vetter Florin Pendea Alwynne B. Beaudoin
2010-2011 Matthew Peros Terri Lacourse Mary Vetter Terri Lacourse Alwynne B. Beaudoin
2008-2009 Elisabeth Levac Matthew Peros Mary Vetter Terri Lacourse Alwynne B. Beaudoin
2002-2003 Alwynne B. Beaudoin Catherine Yansa Marlow Pellatt Mary Vetter Alwynne B. Beaudoin
2000-2001 Martin Head Alwynne B. Beaudoin Francine McCarthy Mary Vetter Alwynne B. Beaudoin
1995-1996 Glen MacDonald and Ian Campbell (shared term) Rob Fensome Martin Head Alwynne B. Beaudoin N/A
1993-1994 Elliott Burden Glen MacDonald Martin Head Alwynne B. Beaudoin N/A
1991-1992 Graham L. Williams Elliott Burden Martin Head Alwynne B. Beaudoin N/A
1989-1990 Bert Van Helden J. Bujak and G. Williams (shared term) Martin Head Alwynne B. Beaudoin N/A
1987-1988 Wayne W. Brideaux Bert Van Helden Martin Head Judith K. Lentin N/A
2007 Sarah Finkelstein Elisabeth Levac Mary Vetter Terri Lacourse Alwynne B. Beaudoin
2006 Sarah Finkelstein (office not filled) Mary Vetter Francine McCarthy and Terri Lacourse Alwynne B. Beaudoin
2005 Catherine Yansa Sarah Finkelstein Marlow Pellatt Francine McCarthy Alwynne B. Beaudoin
2004 Catherine Yansa (office not filled) Marlow Pellatt Mary Vetter Alwynne B. Beaudoin
1999 Rob Fensome Martin Head Francine McCarthy Mary Vetter Alwynne B. Beaudoin
1998 Rob Fensome Martin Head Francine McCarthy Alwynne B. Beaudoin N/A
1997 Ian Campbell Rob Fensome Francine McCarthy Alwynne B. Beaudoin N/A
1986 Rolf W. Mathewes Wayne W. Brideaux Rob Fensome Judith K. Lentin N/A
1985 Jaan Terasmae Rolf W. Mathewes Rob Fensome Bert Van Helden N/A
1984 M. Sedley Barss Jaan Terasmae Rob Fensome Bert Van Helden N/A
1983 Geoffrey Norris (office not filled) Jocelyn Legault Bert Van Helden N/A
1982 Richard Hebda Geoffrey Norris Jocelyn Legault Bert Van Helden N/A
1981 Jan Jansonius Richard Hebda Jocelyn Legault J. Bujak N/A
1980 David M. Jarzen Jan Jansonius Jocelyn Legault J. Bujak N/A
1979 D. Colin McGregor David M. Jarzen Pierre J. H. Richard J. Bujak N/A
Table 2: CAP Councillors to IFPS
Term Councillor Notes
2020-2024 Terri Lacourse Took office at GSA 2020 (virtual), Montréal, 2020
2018-2020 Francine McCarthy Took office at 51st AASP-CAP, Calgary, 2018
2016-2018 Simon Goring  
2012−2016 Simon Goring Took office at XIII IPC, Tokyo, Japan, 2012
2008−2012 Jean Nicolas Haas Took office at XII IPC, Bonn, Germany, 2008
2004−2008 Jean Nicolas Haas Took office at XI IPC, Granada, Spain, 2004
2000−2004 Rolf Mathewes Took office at X IPC, Nanjing, China, 2000
1996-2000 Julian Szeicz (1996-1998)
Gail Chmura
(1998-2000)
Julian Szeicz took office at IX IPC, Houston, Texas, USA, 1996. Gail Chmura took over for the remainder of the term following his death.
1992−1996 David Jarzen Took office at VIII IPC, Aix-en-Provence, France, 1992
1988−1992 David Jarzen Took office at VII IPC, Brisbane, Australia, 1988
1984−1988 John Utting Took office at VI IPC, Calgary, Alberta, Canada, 1984
1980−1984 John Utting Took office at V IPC, Cambridge, England, 1980
1977−1980 John Utting Elected representative to IPC, which later became the IFPS. See Canright (1993). CAP Councillor’s term lasts from one IPC to the next, that is, four years.

Reference: Canright, J. (1993) Organizational History of ICP & IFPS. Palynos 16(2):2