The Southwestern Association of Naturalists has awarded the 2012 W. Frank Blair Eminent Naturalist Award to Dr. Henry Robison, an emeritus professor of biology at Southern Arkansas University. The award recognizes excellence in a lifetime of commitment to outstanding study or conservation of the flora or fauna of the southwestern United States, Mexico, and Central America.
Robison has a long history of distinguished research in ichthyology, herpetology, and invertebrate zoology, which he actively continues. His nearly 200 publications encompass a broad range of interests, especially in aquatic species — he has had one species of crayfish, one stonefly, and two caddisflies named in his honor. He is probably most widely known as coauthor of the books, “Fishes of Oklahoma” and “Fishes of Arkansas.” He is also coauthor of the book “Amphibians and Reptiles of Arkansas” and is working on a book on the crayfishes of Arkansas. As stated by a colleague, Robison “is the modern epitome of the ‘consummate naturalist’ having expertise, knowledge, and experience with hundreds of vertebrate and invertebrate species.”
Robison achieved these accomplishments while performing as a faculty member and dean for 37 years at SAU. He completed a Ph.D. at Oklahoma State University in 1971, and became an emeritus professor at SAU in 2008.
The Southwestern Association of Naturalists is an international association of scientists, educators, and students, founded in 1953 to promote the field study of plants and animals (living and fossil) in the southwestern United States, Mexico, and Central America. The award was announced at the annual meeting held in April at the Valle de Bravo, Mexico, and will be presented to Dr. Robison at the next annual meeting at McNeese State University in Lake Charles, La.